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Full text of "British Documents On Slave Holding And The Slave Trade 1788 1793 Vol 4British Documents On Slave Holding And The Slave Trade 1788 1793 Vol 4: Minutes of the Evidence taken at the House of Lords upon Slavery."

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Committee of the Houfe of Commons, 

B E I N G 


Appointed on the 23d Day of April i 700, 

To take the Examination of the feveral Witnefles 
ordered by the Houfe to attend the Committee of 
the whole Houfe, to whom it is referred to conlider 
further of the Circumftances of the SLAVE 






5 - 4 



yovis, 1° die Aprilis 1790. 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed for the 
Purpofe of taking the Examination of fuch Witneffes as 
fhail be produced on the Part of the feveral Petitioners, 
who have petitioned the Houfe of Commons againft the 
Abolition of the Slave Trade, in purfuance of the Inftruc- 
tion fiom the Houfe of the 23d Day of February laft, 
proceeded to take the Examination of Captain Hall, Mr. 
Falconbridge, and Mr. Wilfon.^-And, having been in¬ 
formed, that Captain Lace could give fome material In¬ 
formation touching feveral Circumftances mentioned in 
the Evidence of Captain Hall, they thought proper to 
take his Examination alfo. 

Lun(g , i° die Martii 1790. 

Captain john ashley hall. 

What is your prefent fituation ? 

I command a fhip in the Weft India trade, belonging to the port 
of London. 0 v 

Have you been in the African Slave Trade j in what years and 
in what capacities? 

I have, in the years 1772. 1777. 177a. mr. and T 

[ 5*4 1 

Neptune, John Smith, matter, belonging to London, as third mate, 
fecond mate, and chief mate. 

To what parts of the Coaft? • 

We touched at Cape Mount, on the Windward Coaft, and failed 
along fhore, fometimes anchoring, trading for rice, till we reached 
Cape Palmas.. k From thence we failed, the firft voyage, to the river 
Del Rey, in’the Bight of Biaffra, where we flaved. The fecond 
voyage, we failed from Cape Palmas to the river Del Rey; but find¬ 
ing trade very dull, we went from thence to the river Old Calabar, 
where we flaved. 

By whom and in what manner were the Slaves you purchafed 

brought to the fhips ? ... 

They were brought on board by the Black traders, with their arms 
pinioned behind them, and fometimes I have feen four or five of 
them with collars about their necks, and chained together. 

Did thefe traders go for them on your arrival *, did they go armed, 
©r in what manner 1 

, They always went after the arrival of the fhip, with the goods 
they got from the fhip; they went in war-canoes. I have feen 
from three to ten canoes in a fleet, each canoe having on board from 
forty to fixty paddlers, and from twenty to thirty traders, and other 
people with a number of mufkets, I fhould fuppofe one to each 
man, with a three or four pounder lafhed down on the bow of the 

-C : -J. 1 - • ' - 

Hgw long were they generally abfent ? 

From fen days to about three weeks. 

Did you hear from thefe traders how they got their Slaves ? 

I have frequently enquired the mode of purchafing the Slaves in¬ 
land, and been informed by the traders, that they were prifoners of 
war, and fold by the people who captured them. 

Did you ever fee Slaves brought on board with wounds upon 
them, and in what proportion ? 

I never faw one brought on board with a frefh wound; I have 

fometimes feen them, but not often, with old fears. 

... ■ . . f 

Did you ever hear Slaves in the Weft Indies deferibe the methods 
by which they became Slaves j and what was their account ? 

I have frequently afked them how they became Slaves; and they 
have conftantly faid, they were either furprized in their towns, or at 
work in the fields, pr taken in fixed battles 


[ SIS 1 

Were children from eight to twelve or thirteen years of age 
brought to be fold, and were thefe brought with or without their 
parents or other near relatipns, for whofe crimes they might be 
fuppofed to have been condemned, and in whole punifhment to 
be involved ? 

I have frequently feen Slaves brought on board from eight to 
thirteen years of age ; they always came without any relations ; I 
never knew but one inftance to the contrary, which was a woman 
with a child, about fix weeks old, fucking at the bread. 

Is it ufual in the rivers Calabar and Del Rey to trade by means 
of pawns ? 

That is the way the trad? is carried on in thofe two rivers, 

Of whom are thefe pawns fuppofed to confill ? 

Very often they are the fons and daughters of the traders, who 
bring them on board as their pawns. 

Did you ever obferve in the Africans any indifference as to the 
fate of the pawns, who had been put into your hands as fecurities 
for your goods ? 

They were always particularly anxious about the fate of the 
pawns, and feemed very much diftrefled whenever they took up 
an idea that the fhip would fail away with the pawns. 

Did you ever obferve in any of the king’s houfes in Africa a 
CQnfiderable number of guns which were faid to be kept for fhew ? 

_ 1 never faw more guns in the houfes of the kings and prin¬ 
cipal traders than appeared to be for ufe, and thofe were never trade 
guns, but of a better fort j on {hp fea coafl they were afraid to fire 
a trade gun. 

Can you give any account of a remarkable tranfaftion faid to 
have happened at Old Calabar in the year 1767 f 

J^ e r * ver CMd Calabar there are two towns, the one called 
Old Town and the other New Town j the New Town was 
a fettlement from the Old Town: in procefs of time the New 
Town became rivals in trade to the Old Town i in confequence 
of this nvalfhip a jealoufy was fpread in both towns; fo much 
were they afraid of each other, that for a confiderable time no 
canoe could leave their towns to go up the river for Slaves—this 
happened m the year 1767. I heg leave to correct an error in 
point of time : when I was examined before the Honouiable Privy 
Council, I faid this tranfaction happened in 1768.-10 17^7 there 


[ S«* ] 

were feven fhips laying ofF the point which feparates the two 
town6 j the captains of fix of the fhips invited the people of 
both towns on board the different fhips on a certain day, as if 
to bring ab ut a reconciliation between the two towns; at the 
fame time they entered into an agreement with the people of the 
New Town to cut off all the Old Town people who fhould be 
on board the next morning. In confequence of this invitation, 
the Old Town people, who were fully perfuaded of the fincerity 
of the proportion of the captains to bring about a reconciliation, 
went on board without fufpicion in great numbers j the next 
morning, at eight o’clock, one of the fhips fired a gun as a fignal 
to the other fhips to commence hoftilities; the firing imme¬ 
diately became general on board the other fliips, fome of the 
traders were fecured on board the different fhips ; fome were 
killed in refilling, and fome got overboard, when they were fired 
upon by the people on board the fhips; as loon as the firing com¬ 
menced the people of New Town, who were lying in ambufh 
behind the point, came forward, and picked up the people of 
Old Town that were fwimming, and had efcaped the firing of 
the fhips; after the firing was over, the captains of five of the 
fhips delivered their prifoners, who were perfons of confequence, 
to the New Town canoes, two of whom had their heads flruck 
off in the canoes along fide the fhips 5 the inferior prifoners were 
kept on board the fhips, and carried to the Weft Indies. One of 
the captains, who had fecured three of the king’s brothers, deli¬ 
vered one of them up to the principal man of New Town, who 
was one of the two men who had his head cut off along fide the 
fhip; the other two of the king’s brothers he kept on board, and 
promifed, when the fhip was flaved, to deliver them up to the 
principal man of New Town. His fhip was foon flaved, in con- 
feq :ence of his promife, and the number of prifoners that were 
made on that day. When his fhip was flaved, he refufed to de¬ 
liver the faid king’s two brothers, and carried them off the Coaft to 
the Weft Indies, where th*y were fold; from thence they made their 
efcape in a veffel bound to Virginia, where, after flaying above 
three years, they made their efcape in another fhip bound to 
Briftol. When they got to Briftol, the captain who brought them 
from Virginia, though privy to their leaving Virginia in his fhip, 
fearing he had done wrong, meditated carrying them back to Vir¬ 
ginia, or lending them there in fome other fhip. Mr. Jones, a 
merchant of Briftol, concerned in the African Trade, who had 
fhips trading to Old Calabar, got them taken out of the fhip, 
where they were in irons, by a Habeas Corpus; and after being 
fully examined to the manner in which they were brought from 


[ 5 J 7 1 

the Coaft of Africa, they were liberated, and put on board one of 
Mr. Jones’s fhips, then ready to fail for Old Calabar. I was at 
Old Calabar when thefe two men (brothers to the king) arrived 
from Briftol in the fhip Cato, John Langdon, matter. They 
laid they were treated very ill in the Weft Indies, but much 
better in Virginia. So perfectly fatisfied were the people of 
Old Town, in the year 1767, of the fincerity of the captains 
who had invited them on board their fhips, and of the lin¬ 
cerity of the New Town people towards a reconciliation, that 
the night before the malTacre the principal man of Old Town 
gave to the principal man of New Town one of his fa¬ 
vourite women as a wife. It was laid, that from three to 
four hundred perfons were killed on that day on board the 
different fhips, and in the water, or carried off the coaft. The 
king made his efcape from on board the fhip he was in, but not 
till he had killed two of J the crew who attempted to feize him. 
After he jumped overboard he got into a little canoe, called a 
one-man canoe, and paddled from the fhip to the fhore. One of 
the fhips fired a fix-pounder at the cance, which ftruck her, and 
broke her to pieces. He then fwam on fhore to the woods near 
the fhip, and effefted his retreat to his own town, though clofely 
purfued. It was faid the king received eleven wounds that morn¬ 
ing from mufket fhot. 

Upon what different teftimonies do you relate this ? 

Firft from Thomas Rutter, who was boatfwain of the fhip 
Neptune the firft voyage 1 was in that fhip. The fame Thomas 
Rutter was boatfwain in the year 1767 on board the fhip Canter¬ 
bury, Captain Sparkes, belonging to London, and concerned in 
the malTacre of the Old Town people. Thomas Rutter told me 
the ftory exadfly as I have related it, as far as relates to that day: 
he never varied in his account.—The fecond voyage I heard the 
fame account repeatedly from the king’s two brothers, who came 
to Calabar in the Cato, Captain Langdon, and who were the two 
men taken off on that occafion. Their ftory agreed exadtly with 

Have you any grounds for believing that the natives of the 
Windward Coaft have fometimes been carried off by the Guinea 
fhips by fraud and violence ? 

When failing along the Windward Coaft, I have often feen ca¬ 
noes hovering about the fhip for a confiderable time; and after 
much entreaty they have come on board, but with fo much cau¬ 
tion and lufpicion that they have kept conftantly near the fhip’s 

6 U . fide. 

fide, in order to jump overboard the inftant they faw any incli¬ 
nation- to flop them. I have afked them the reafons of their fuf- 
picions and fears; and they have replied, that they were afraid of 
being taken off the Coaft, for that fome of their countrymen had 
been carried off in that manner. 

When the Slaves are brought on board to be fold, do they 
ufually appear dejefted ? 

Always; it foon wears off with the young Slaves, and fome of 
the women ; but the men are dejected, and appear unhappy in 
the extreme, the whole of the voyage. , 

To what did you afcribe this dejedtion ? 

To their being taken forcibly from their neareft and deareft 
connexions, and their native country. # 

Are the Slaves brought on board in irons, and are they kept in 
irons when on board ? 

They are always brought on board with their arms pinioned be¬ 
hind them with fmall cords twifted, from the bark of trees and 
grafs; fometimes three, four, and five men have been brought on 
board with collars about their necks, and chained together. They 
are immediately put in irons on their coming on board, two men 
together, and kept in irons, on hands and feet, till their arrival in 
the Weft Indies, unlefs they are taken ill, in which cafe they are 
taken out of irons. 

Do you mean to fpeak both of male and female flaves ? 

I never faw a female Slave put in irons, in either of my 

Are there ever difagreements between the Slaves that are linked 
together, and on what cccafions ? 

They frequently difagree in the night about their lleeping 
places ; and frequently the men linked together difagree and fight, 
when one wants perhaps to obey the calls of nature, and the other 
has been unwilling to go with him. 

What is the ufual food of the Slaves on board ? 

Horfe-beans, rice, and yams, with a little palm oil and pepper 
for fauce. 

Have you known them refufe to eat, and what methods have 
been taken on. thofe occafions ? 

2 They 

[ 5*9 1 

They frequently refufe to eat, particularly beans j and when 
they have fb refufed, they are corredted with a cat o’nine tails. 

May not their refufal to eat have been fometimes attributed to 
fullennefs, when it has in fadt been owing to indifpofition ? 

I have met with fuch inftances, particularly one man who was 
corredted for not eating (but not immoderately) fuppofing he had 
been ftubborn, which man was found dead next morning. 

Do the Slaves ever dance when on board, and in what does this 
dancing con ft ft ? 

They are made after each meal to jump up and down upon the 
beating of a drum ; this is what I have heard called dancing, but 
not what I confider as dancing, as it is not to mufic of their 

Are they ever compelled to it, and by what means ? 

Whenever they refufe to dance, or jump up and down, they are 
compelled to do it by the ufe of the cat, which is a very common 
inftrument on board every African fhip I have been on board. 

Have you ever obferved the Slaves to fuffer much in confequence 
of heat, or for want of air ? 

I have frequently heard them crying out when below for the 
want of air, and between decks of an African fhip with their 
Slaves on board, it is fo violently hot, that 1 have frequently, after 
being below but a few minutes, had my ftiirt fo wet by perfpi- 
ration, that I could have wrung it as if it had been fteeped in 

What was the tonnage of your veflel, and how many Slaves did 
you purchafe in each voyage ? 

Her tonnage by regifter was about 180 tons 3 we purchafed the 
firft voyage about 270 Slaves j the fecond voyage I can fpeak with 
more accuracy to, we then purchafed 280 Slaves. 

How many did you lofe in the courfe of the two voyages reflec¬ 
tively ? 

In the firft voyage we loft, I think twenty *, in the fecond voy¬ 
age we loft exadtly ninety; the reafon I could not fpeak with the 
fame certainty to the number purchafed and loft in my firft voyage, 
proceeds from my having been ill, and obliged to give up my 
journal; of the fecond voyage I have a very corredt journal. 



[ 5 20 1 

What is your opinion of the lofs of Slaves on board other 

^From the fhips I have feen come into the Weft Indies 1 have 
found the lofs to be very confiderable on board many of them j 
have known inftances of fhips burying half their cargo of Slaves, 
fome a quarter, and fome a third j and it is a very uncommon 
inftance ?o find (hips come into the Weft Indies without the lofs 
nf fnme of their Slaves. 

How many feamen did you lofe in thofe two voyages refpec- 
* T 1 ? 

We loft ten the firft voyage out of twenty-three $ and on the 
fecond voyage, nine of thirty. 

Have you any journal of thefe Ioffes now in your poffeffion ? 

I have. 

Was it made at the time? 

Both journals were kept daily, fo that the tranfadhons were 
immediately mentioned after they happened. 

Can you bring thofe journals before the Committee, if re¬ 

1 can. 

Was any other veflel employed in the Slave Trade at the fame 
time as yours, belonging to the fame concern ? 

There was a Ship, called the Venus, that failed with us both 
voyages from England, belonging to the fame owners; we kept 
company to the river Del Rey the firft voyage, where we flav^d; 
that (hip buried in that voyage eighteen men out of thirty. The 
fecond voyage we kept company to the river Calabar, where we 
both (laved; and in that voyage her mortality of feamen exceeded 
ours in proportion to her complement, but I cannot fpeak to the 
exadt loi's. 

Have you met with inftances of other Guinea-men on the Coaft, 
which have experienced a great mortality in their crew ? 

In the fecond voyage we (peke to thefhip York, captain Adams, 
on the Windward Coaft j (he had been ten months from Liver¬ 
pool, and had loft fifty-one of her people, among whom were fix 
mates, out of a complement of feventy-five men, which (he left 
Liverpool with. 


[ 5*1 ] 

Do you mean that (he had fet out with fix mates, or that 
(he had loft fix perfons who were either originally her mates, 
or were fucceffively appointed to that office on the death of the 
former ? 

The ffiips trading upon the Windward Coaft, by procuring 
their cargoes of Slaves chiefly by their boats, generally carry out 
more mates than the other African ffiips; and I ffiould fuppofe 
the fix mates faid to have been loft, were mates originally with 
the ffiip upon leaving Liverpool. 

Do you relate this inftance entirely from memory, or from any 
journal you may have kept ? 

I relate this inftance from a remark made in my journal 
on the day we fpoke the York on the Windward Coaft of 

Do you know of any Guinea-men which, on their arrival in the 
Weft Indies, have been found to have fuffered confiderably in 
their crews ? 

I do; in the year 1788, in the month of May, two ffiips 
arrived from Africa, called the Hornet and Benlon; they anchor¬ 
ed clofe to my ffiip; I went on board the Hornet, and was in¬ 
formed they had loft eleven men out of thirty-five (their original 
crew); when the Benfon came to anchor I was on board my own 
fhip, and could only fee two White men upon her yards handing 
the fails, the reft were Black boys, Slaves. 

In what ftate is a Guinea-man’s crew commonly landed in the 
Weft Indies ? 

The crews of the African ffiips, when they arrive in the Weft 
Indies, are generally (I do dot know a Angle inftance to the con¬ 
trary) in a fickly debilitated ftate, and the feamen who are dis¬ 
charged, or defert from thofe (hips in the Weft Indies, are the 
moft miferable objedts I ever met with in any country in my 
life ; 1 have frequently feen them with their toes rotted off, their 
legs fwelled to the fize of their thighs, and in an ulcerated ftate 
all over; fuch is their fituation, that however inclined to re¬ 
lieve them, by taking them on board our ffiips, we are deterred 
from it by not having furgeons on board to give them that 
affiftance that they ftand fo much in need of: I have feen them 
on the different Wharfs in the Iflands of Antigua, Barbadoes, and 
Jamaica (particularly at the two laft Iflands) 5 I have alfo feen 
them laying under the cranes and the balconies of the houfes 
near the water fide in Barbadoes and Jamaica expiring, and fome 

6 X quite 

[ 5 22 1 

quite dead. I met with an inftance laft July of a dead feaman 
laying on one of the wharfs in Bridge Town Barbadoes, who had 
been landed out of an African {hip. 

Have you ever {hipped a {ingle African feaman, or how many, 
in the Weft Indies in any one of the voyages you have made 

th I never {hipped an African feaman in any voyage I have made 
to the Weft Indies. 

How long have you commanded a Weft Indiaman, and how 
many voyages have you made fmce you have been in that 
canacitv ? 

I have commanded a W eft Indiaman ten years, and have made 
ten voyages. 

Can you ftate the number of feamen you have loft in each of 
thole voyages refpeCtively, and the caufes of the mortality ? 

I never loft but one feaman fince I have commanded a Weft 
India {hip, and that was owing to the man s own intemperance. 

Do you then confider the Slave Trade as being more deftruc- 
tive than any other to the feamen employed in it ? 

I believe the African Slave Trade to be particularly deftrudtive 
to the feamen employed in it, and beyond every degree of com¬ 
panion with any trade I am acquainted with. 

In your opinion are teamen worle treated in the Slave Trade 

than in any other ? . 

I believe they are in general treated with great barbarity in the 
African Slave {hips; and I do not know of their being treated ill 
in any other fervice. 

What are the productions which you remember to have feen on 
the continent of Africa? 

On the Windward Coaft I have feen rice, ivory, and Malaguetta 
pepper, which are articles of commerce; I have alto feen plantanes, 
bananas, yams, and many of the tropical fruits. On the Leeward 
Coaft I have feen palm oil, ivory, and bar-wood, and alfo yams, 
plantanes, bananas, and moft of the tropical fruits; I have feen 
very fine fugar canes brought on board the {hips. 

Have you ever feen tobacco ? 

I have 

[ 5 2 3 ] 

I have feen the traders and canoe-men fmoaking tobacco of their 
own growth. 

What is the quality of the African rice ? 

It was confidered, in the fhip I failed in, much heartier food 
than the Carolina rice. 

Do you remember any circumftance iq confirmation of that 
opinion ? 

We ufed to put two crues of water to one crue of rice of the 
Carolina production, and three crues of water to one crue of rice 
of the African production. I fpeak this as being the practice of 
the fhip wherein I was. 

. Do y° u know concerning the rice plantations in America, and 
js there any difference of the foil in which the rice of the two 
continents is produced ? 

I have been at South Carolina, but never law rice growings 
yet I have been conftantly informed, upon enquiry, that it 
grew in fwamps and marfhy ground. I have feen rice grow in 
Africa, and it has been in a dry foil. 

Is the rice on the continent of Africa brought on board the 
veflels in any quantity at a time, and is it frequently loft in the 
furf, or not P 

I have been purchafing it on the Windward Coaft from the 
natives, who bring it on board in fmall canoes (frequently only 
one man m a canoe) in a kind of bafket; and I have been fre- 
quently °n fhore purchafing it in our own boats, and I do not 
recollect of ever lofing any from the furf. 

Is the furf m any of the Weft India lfiands, from whence hogf- 
heads of fugar or other bulky articles are (hipped, as great as on the 

Gold and Windward Coafts of Africa, or as on other parts of 
that continent ? r 

I have feen the furf at the Wands of Dominique and St. Chrifto- 
pher full as high as I ever faw it on the Windward Coaft of 
Africa I never was on the Gold Coaft, therefore cannot fpeak 
as to the furf there; and on the Leeward Coaft I was in the 
rivers where there was no furf. 

Are there any rivers on the Windward Coaft, that might be 
uiea in (hipping articles of commerce ? 

There are rivers on the Windward Coaft, but I never was uo 
any ot them, therefore cannot fpeak to that queftion. 


Do the Europeans who trade for Slaves in the Bight of Benin 
purchafe any articles from the natives of the ifland of Furnan- 

^^They purchafe great quantities of yams and eddoes from the 
people of Furnandipo. 

Is it confidered as a regular market, and are the natives in con- 
fequence prepared to furnifh the (hipping with yams to the extent 

of their demands ? ,__ 

1 have frequently been at Furnandipo m the (hip s long-boat, 

from the rivers Del Rey and Calabar, for the purpofe of purchafing 
yams, and I always found them very ready to trade. We always 
completed our purchafe in a very (hort time. 

Is the number of (hips confiderable which they thus fupply ? 

The (hips from the rivers Old Calabar, Del Rey, and the Ca¬ 
meroon*, I believe all fend to Furnandipo for yams and eddoes, as 
I have frequently fpoke with boats from thofe rivers trading to 
that ifland; and I believe at fome time the number of (hips mult 
have been confiderable. 

Have you ever been yourfelf upon the ifland. 

I have. 

Did you obferve that agriculture was carried to greater per- 
fedion there, fo far as related to the articles of yams and ed¬ 
does, than on the continent of Africa, where there is no market 

for the exportation of thefe articles ? 

I have been (even miles at lead m the interior part of the 
ifland of Furnandipo, and the yam and eddoe plantations I have 
always found kept in the highelt order, and much more fo than 
thofe of Calabar. 

Was the culture of them carried to as great perfection as in 

the Weft Indies ? ... 

The yams were much better and larger than any I ever met with 

in the Weft Indies, but I cannot fay whether the production is 

greater for the land planted. 

Do you know if there is any difference in the mode of cul- 

I do not; only that at Furnandipo they put fmall (ticks in 
the ground for the yam vines to run upon. 

[ 5*S 1 

there any commerce in Slaves carried on by the natives of 
Furnandipo ? 

There is not. There are fome inftances in which they have 
been taken off by the fhips and boats touching there. 

What proportion do the Slaves bear to the free men, fo far as 
you have been able to obferve, in the parts of Africa where you 
have been ? 

As I never flaved upon the Windward Coaft, I never had an 
opportunity of feeing any Slaves there. At Cd.ibar and Del Rey 
the only people that I heard called Slaves were the canoe-boys, 
who bear a fmall proportion to the people of thofe places. 

What have you obferved concerning the treatment of the Slaves 
in thefe places ? 

I have always feen them treated with great kindnefs and fami¬ 
liarity ; fo much fo, that it is fometimes difficult to diffinguiffi the 
mailer from the Slave. 

* In the different villages which you have feen in Africa, did 
you obferve children in any number, or any other marks of popu- 
loufnefs ? 

The towns and villages which I have feen in Africa appeared to 
be fully peopled; and I have feen as many children, in proportion 
to the grown people, as 1 have met with in this country. 

What is your opinion, in general, of the difpofition of the Na¬ 
tives on the continent of Africa ? 

I believe them to be as tradable and ingenious as the people 
of Europe, under the fame difad vantages ; and I believe them capable 
of all the virtues in as eminent a degree as Europeans. 

Do you conceive them to be infurmountably indolent, if they 
had proper inducements to induftry ? 

I never faw them particularly indolent when there was an oppor¬ 
tunity of employing themfelves to advantage. 

What was your reafon for quitting the Slave Trade ? 
l I quitted it from coiivi&ion that it was perfectly, illegal, and 
founded in bloca. 

Could you have had a fhip in that Trade if you had chofen it; 
and would fuch an appointment have been a profitable one ? 

I could frequently have obtained the command of a fhip in that 

6 Y fervice, 

[ 5*6 ] 

fervice, and it was at that time a very lucrative fervice for the 
mafters employed therein. 

Have you any information to give refpedting the treatment of 
Slaves in the Weft Indies ? 

Called upon as 1 have been, I have delivered my fentiments of 
the Slave Trade as far as it relates to the Coaft of Africa and the 
Middle Paflage ; but I am not competent, nor do I with to fpeak 
to the Weft Indies. 

Of what age was you when you went out as fecond mate in 1772? 

In my twenty-fecond year. 

Was you often on fhore at that time ? 

I was frequently on fhore on the Windward Coaft, and frequently 
on fhore in the river Calabar, not often at Del Rey. 

What was your fituation on your fecond voyage in 1774 ? 

I was fecond mate and chief mate in the courfe of that voyage $ 
we flaved that voyage at Old Calabar, but called firft at Del Rey. 

Was you often on fhore at Calabar ? 

Very frequently, fometimes three or four different times in one day. 

Had you any particular duty to call you on fhore ? 

Whenever I went on fhore it was on the fhip’s duty. 

What did that duty confift of? 

To bring on board fometimes Slaves, and fometimes palm oil, 
and other articles. 

Did you attend the Slaves to the fhip ? 


Was that your laft voyage ? 


Was you not engaged to have gone a third voyage with Captain 
Smith, as chief mate ? 

I was not. 

Did you quit the Trade to go to the Weft Indies to receive a le¬ 
gacy, or from confcientious principles? 

I quitted the Trade from confcientious principles, and not to 
receive a legacy in the Weft Indies. 



t J 2 7 ] 

t)id you go to the Weft Indies ? 

I did. 

And did you receive a legacy ? 

I did not. 

• Why did you go to the Weft Indies ? 

To fee my friends. 

Who offered you the command of a fhip afterwards in the 
African Trade? 

I was offered the command of a fhip in the African Trade, in 
the Ifland of Antigua, by Mr. Taylor, in 1783. 

Had you any offer of a fhip from 1774 to 1782 ? 

Not for the African Trade. 

Have you had any other offer of a fhip in the African Trade thart 
the one you have mentioned ? 

I have. 

From whom and when ? 

From Mr. Cox, in the year 1781 and 1782^ 

Who is Mr. Cox ? 

A merchant in London. 

Is he an African merchant ? 

No he would have purchafed a fhip for that Trade* and given 
me the command of her, but I declined it. 

What employment was you in at that time ? 

• I commanded a fhip in the Weft India trade. 

Had you any other offers in the African trade ? 

I had not, becaufe I had declared I would never go there 

In the tranfaftion which you have mentioned at C.dabar, and 
which you heard from Rutter and the king’s two brothers, did 
you take that account down in writing when you firft heard it ? 

No, I did not. 

Do you fpeak then only from memory ? ■ 

• I faw at Calabar the depofition$ that were taken at Briftol of 


[ 5 z8 3 

thefe two men, and of William Floyd, who was mate of one of the 
fhips when the tranfadtion happened. 

Did you take a copy of thofe depofitions ? 

I did not. 

Do you fpeak then only from memory ? 

From nothing elfe. 

When was this account firft told to you ? 

In 1772, in my paflage to Africa. 

And did the faft alluded to happen in 1 767 ? 


In whofe pofleflions were the depofitions you faw at Calabar ? 

In the pofleflion of the two men (brothers to the king) who had 
been carried off on that occafion. 

What were the names of the (hips, and the names of the cap¬ 
tains, that were at Calabar at that time ? 

I cannot remember the names of all of them, but of fome I 
can •, namely, the (hip Duke of York, Captain Beaven, of Liver¬ 
pool ; the (hip Edgar, Captain Lace, of Liverpool; the Indian 
Queen, Captain Lewis, of Briftol; the (hip Nancy, Captain 
Maxwell, of Briftol; the (hip Canterbury, Captain Sparkes, of 

Did you ever hear of Captain Lace’s taking under his care any 
of the king’s fons ? 


What number of people from the Old Town came on board the 
fhips ? 

I was informed more than 400. 

Did they all ftay the night on board the fhips ? 

I apprehend moft of them did. 

Were the king and his brothers on board the fhip ? 

They were. 

How near were the fhips to the Old Town ? 

I fhould fuppofe about three miles. 


[ S 2 9 ] 

And how near to the New Town? 

I never faw the New Town, therefore cannot fay j but I have 
been informed that the towns are about eight miles diftant from 
each other. 

Were the fhips much nearer the Old Town than the New 
Town ? 

I fhould fuppofe they were. 

When the people from the New Town were on {hore to inter¬ 
cept the Old Town people fwimming from the (hips, were there 
no people from the Old Town on (hore to be witnefies of the 
tranfadion ? 

The New Town people were in their canoes round the point 
of land, which was a very thick word, near the fliips; and the 
Old Town people w r ere all of them along-fide the fhips in their 
canoes, and on board the fliips. 

And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

Martis , 2° die Martii 1790. 

ptain Hall called in, and further examined. 

Were the Englifh as well received at Old Calabar, after the Captain HALL, 
tranfadion which happened there, as they were before ? 

I was not there before the tranfadion happened, nor did I go 
to that river till feven years afterwards. 

Did not you inform the Privy Council the Englifh were as well 
received after that tranfadion ? 

They were very well received when I was there. 

Queflion repeated. 

I did; I alluded to my going there. 

6 Z 


[ 53° 1 

If you did not know that they were as well received after as 
before, why did you give that account to the Privy Council ? 

Ships had tra.led there between that tranfadtion and my going 
there, and I never heard there had been any d fpute. 

Is Rutter the boatfwain ftill alive ? 

I have not feen him fince the fhip returned, in the year 1774. 

D) you know whether he is alive ? 

] have never heard of him, or about him, fince we parted. 

You have faid, that the Slaves came pinioned to the (hip, and 
were continued in irons during the voyage; is that the practice in 
African fhips ? 

I have feen them brought on board Guinea-men; they do not 
put the firft eight or ten in irons, but after that every man is put 
in irons when he came on board; and on board my fhip they 
were kept in irons, unlefs in cafe of ficknefs, till we reached the 
Weft Indies. 

Queftion repeated. 

It was the practice in my fhip. 

Do you or do you not know that it is the practice in other 
African fhips ? 

I believe it is the general practice. 

Did the boats you faw going from Calabar, in which many men 
were armed, go for the purpofe of trading, or to make war ? 

I believe for the purpofe of trading, as I neve? heard to the con¬ 

You faid that the Negroes in the Weft Indies told you, that 
they were either taken from their houfes in Africa, or in the fields ; 
do you not know that the lands in Africa are commonly cultivated 
by women ? 

I do not. 

Do you imagine that the Slaves which were carried to the 
Weft Indies, having been convidted of crimes, would confefs their 
guilt ? 

I do not believe they would. 


[ 53i ] 

You mentioned, that the African natives were very much at¬ 
tached to their pawns; did you ever know of a Ihip failing from 
the Coaft of Africa without giving notice of its intention of de¬ 
parture ? 

I did not. 

Is there not always time given for redeeming the pawns ? 

I can only fpeak to my own fliip, and in her that was the 


You mentioned, that on the Windward Coaft fome men came 
on board your fhip from a boat, and that they fhewed great cau¬ 
tion ; is that your only ground for thinking they are often impro¬ 
perly taken away ? 

And the queftion being objected to, 

The Witnefs was direfted to withdraw. 

And being again called in ; 

And the following anfwer being read to him, 

“ When failing along the Windward Coaft, I have often 
“ feen canoes hovering about the fhip for a confiderable 
** time ; and after much entreaty they have come on 
“ board, but with fo much caution and fufpicion, 
“ and that they have kept conftantly near the fhip’s 
“ ftde, in order to jump overboard the inftant they faw 
“ any inclination to ftop them. I have alked them the 
“ realbns of their fufpicions and fears ; and they have 
“ replied, that they were afraid of being taken off the 
“ Coaft, for that fome of their countrymen had been 
“ carried off in that manner j” 

He was afked. 

Did you ever know or hear of any perfons being carried off 
from the canoes by the fhips to the Weft Indies ? 

I heard one inftance. 

State that inftance ? 

Captain Jeremiah Smith informed me, that the voyage before 
I was with his brother, which was in 1772, that the veffel had 
taken off fome of the people from the Windward Coaft. 

What veffel was it, and of what nation ? 

It was an Englilh veffel; I never heard the fhip’s name, but 


[ 53 2 ] 

the captain’s name was Fox j Captain Smith alfo informed me 
that Captain Fox had called himfelf Smith, and that in confe- 
quence of it he had a difpute near Cape Palmas. 

Was it an African fhip ? 


Do you know of any inftance, from your own knowledge, of 
perfons being taken away ? 

I do not. • 

You mentioned the Slaves being made to dance on board the 
(hips; is that a common practice on board African Imps i 
I believe it is. 

You have ftated, that the crews of the African fhips, when 
they arrive in the Weft Indies, are generally in a fickly debilitated 
ftate and the Teamen who are difcharged or defert from thofe 
Ihips’ in the Weft Indies are the moft miferable objedts you ever 
met with in any country; and that you have frequently feen them 
with their toes rotted off, their legs fwelled to the fize of their 
thighs, and in an ulcerated ftate all over i— can you inform the 
Committee what had occafioned thofe calamities ? 

I believe they proceed generally from the fcurvy. 

Is that complaint confined to African Ihips ? 

I believe it is oftener in the African Ihips than in any other that 

I know of. 

Are failors in Ihips in other trades liable to it ? . 

1 never faw a man in any ft.ip that I have failed in labouring 

under the fcurvy in a great degree. 

Did you ever fee any body in the Ifland of Barbadoes that was 
afflicted with that calamity, that had not been in an African Ihip f 
I do not recoiled* ever feeing a failor afflided with it belonging 
to any other Ihips in the merchants lervice. 

Queftion repeated. 

I have feen people labouring under the black fcurvy or leprofy. 

Does the black fcurvy produce that efied on the toes and legs? 
I believe it does, but I do not know myfelf the difference between 
the fcurvy and the leprofy. • 

t 533 1 

Have you known frequent inftances of failors running away, or 
being difcharged, that had their foes rotted off and their legs 
fwelled ? 

I have feen many with their legs fwelled, and with ulcers on 
their legs but not many (though fome) with their toes off. 

On the Windward Coaft, was you able to obtain as much rice as 
you chofe? 

W<S carried out both voyages feme Carolina rice, in cafe we 
Chould not be able to get any on the Windward Coafl $ but we 
were two Chips in company both voyages, and we procured as 
much rice, in addition to what we had on board, as we wanted. 

Could you have got rice enough to have loaded a veffel of too 
tons ? 

I do not know.. 

What is the moll diftant plantation for rice from the fea 
Chore ? 

I never was more than from three to four miles on the Wind* 
ward Coafl. 

Did you fee any plantations of rice there ? 

I have feen fields of rice* t 


What is the mod diftant plantation of rice from the fea Chore 
that you have feen ? 

From three to four miles. 

• 1 4* 

In what manner could that rice be carried to the Chips ? 

In baCkets, on perfons heads. 

' ' ' ■ ,V ; 1 ■ . I 

Is that the common or only conveyance ? 

I have never feen them bring the rice out of the country, but 
I have feen them bring it down in that manner from the towns near 
the Chore to the water-fide. 


How is the rice carried from the plantations to the towns? 

• I do not know. 

How is it carried from the towns to the water-fide? 

In bafkets, on perfons heads. 

Are there any carts or beads of burthen there ? 

I never faw any. 

7 A 


[ 534 1 

Are there any roads ? 

There are tracks and path-ways. 

In what manner do you think the rice could be conveyed from 

the plantations to the water-fide ? . . , 

If the plantations were at no great diftance, I think it might 
be carried on perfons heads. 

And if they were at a great diftance, how could the rice be 
carried ? 

I cannot anfwer that queftion. 

Did you lee much ivory on the Windward Coaft ? 

Very little. 

From whence did that ivory come ? 

I cannot fay particularly from what towns it came, but it was 
brought on board in canoes. 

Did it come from a diftant country ? 

I do not know. 

Do you imagine that a greater quantity of ivory could be ob¬ 
tained ? 

I do not know. 

You faid, that on the Leeward Coaft you faw fome ivory, was 
that ivory in any quantity ? 

I believe we might have purchafed about three tons in each 

Do you know from whence that ivory came, and how it was 
brought down? 

I do not. 

Has this country any command or controul over the ftates of 
Africa ? 

Not that I know of. 

Has this country any power of enforcing regulations of com¬ 
merce over the ftates of Africa ? 

I do not know. 

Have you heard of a law for regulating the Middle Paffage ? 

I have. 


t 535 ] 

Do you think that that law may correCt many of the evils which 
you have dated in the Middle Paflage? 

I never read the ad. 

You have ftated, that it is between th’rtecn or fourteen years fince 
you left the African Trade; is what you have dated relating to that 
Trade confined to that period? 

It is not. 

What period does it relate to ? 

Till very lately. 

Do you fpeak of your own knowledge, having left the Trade ? 

I have frequently, fince I left the Trade, feen the pe:ple from the 
African (hips in the fituation I have already dated* 

You dated that the provifions given the Slaves on board the 
African fhips were horfe-beans, rice, and yam c , mixed with palm-oil 
and pepper; are thofe the only provifions they are allowed? 

Thofe were the general provifions, but I have known a fmall 
quantity of bread given now and then to the fick; and we have got 
at the Ifland of Annabona a few cocoa-nuts, and fomeCaflada flour, 
of which we occafionally gave the Slaves a little. 

„ Do they give them nothing elfe? 

The fick Slaves fometimes had a dram in the morning. 

Had not the fhips commonly live flock on board ? 

Not for the Slaves; I confine royfelf in my anfwers to my own 

Can you fpeak to the practice of other fhips ? 

I cannot. 

Do you fuppofe that the armed canoes which you mentioned to 
have feen in Del Rey river, were equipped in that manner to com¬ 
mit hoftilities, or for the protection mere'y of thole who were in them, 
and their goods? 

For the protection of thofe that were on board them, and their 

Do you know whether the chiefs of the Negroes poflefs Slaves 2s 
a property which they have a right to difpofe of ? 

I never knew of their difpofing of any in my fhip. 


Do you know of their difpofing of them in any other ftiip ? 

1 do not. 

Do you know whether the Africans fell thofe who are convidted 
of theft, adultery, and other crimes? 

I never purchafed one. 

Queftion repeated. 

I never faw them fell any of them to anyother (hip. 


Do you know whether they do or do not fell them ? 

I do not. 

Did you everpurchafe a Slave of any defcripuon? 
No, 1 have not. 

Do you know any thing at all about the Slave Trade, if you never 
purchafed a Slave? 

At Calabar and Del Rey the Slaves were always purchafed y the 
captains; on the Windward Coaft they are in a great meafure pur¬ 
chafed in boats, which is done by the mates. 

Did you ever purchafe a Slave when you was a mate ? 

No, we did not then purchafe any Slaves on the Windward Coaft. 

What was your duty as mate? e 

When fecond mate, my duty was in the hold when upon the 

Do you know in what fituation of life the Slaves had been in be¬ 
fore they were brought to the Chip, and while they were offered for 

fale ? 

I do not. 

Then how can you afiert that the Trade is founded in blood, and 

It is my opinion that many Slavesa re killed, and of courfe I muft 
be of opinion that it is a bloody trade. 

Upon what information do you found that opinion ? 

From having heard from fome of the traders, that the Slaves were 
prifoners of war, and from fome of them in the Weft Indies having 
told me they were kidnapt 


[ $37 1 

Did not you affert before the Privy Council, that you did not 
believe any wars were entered into upon the fea coaft for the pur- 
pofe of making Slaves ? 

I did. 

Was your information refpedting the kidnapping of Slaves ob¬ 
tained from the information of Slaves in the Weft Indies ? 

It was. 

You have ftated that there were 406 of the Old Town people on 
board Englifh fhips at Calabar, or in their canoes alongfide of 
them, when the t ran faction which you related is fuppofed to have 
happened, and that the king killed two White men who attempted 
to feize him;—were all his followers unarmed, and Were the 400 
men were with him unequal to cope with the crews of the 
feven fhips ? 

I do not know in what flate of defence the people in the canoes 
were at that time* but when they came on board, in the common 
ccurfe of trade and vifits, they had very few mufkets in their ca¬ 
noes, and they are never fuffered to bring their arms into the fhips, 
therefore thofc that were on board were incapable of refitting. 

How many of thefe Old Town people do you fuppofe were on 
board each of the fhips ? 

I fhould fuppofe the greater part of them were canoe-boys (as 
they are calledj and kept in the canoes. 

Do you know Ephraim Robin John, commonly called Duke 
Ephraim, a man of confcquence of Old Town ? 

1 know Ephraim Robin John, but when 1 was at Calabar he 
was called King George. 

Do you know Captain Lace of Liverpool, and did he prote£t 
Duke Ephraim's fon from the vengeance of the New Town people; 
and though offered a very high price for him, did he bring the 
young man to England, keep him there feveral years, till the war 
was over, and then fend him to his father? 

I do not know Captain Lace, nor have I heard the ftory as re¬ 
lated in the queftion. 

From what information are you now able to correct the date of 
the tranfadfion at Calabar ? 

1 have, fince I have been examined by the Honourable Privy 
Council, feen a lecond copy of the depofitions of William Floyd, 

7 B mate 

mate of the Indian Queen, Captain Lewis, and of the King’s two 
brothers, taken at B.ifiol. 

What is the general character of the people at Old Calabar ? 
They behaved very well to the (hip I belonged to, in the voyage 

we (laved to that river. 

Queftion repeated. 

I never heard any thing againft them by any body^while I was in 
the Trade. 1 heard Captain Jeremiah Smith, of the (hip Venm, 
having had a difpute with them, I think in the years 1777 or 177s, 
but what was the caufe, and who the aggrtffor, I know not; th,t is 
the only inftance of their having had uifpuies with any body t. a 
tnnw nf- 

Did you ever hear of the Calabar people feizing, imprifoning, and 
poifoning Captains Fidler and Doyle, of Liverpool, m the year 

^lliave heard that thofe two captains were poifoned; but as iar ao 
my memory ferves, it was by the New T. own people. 

How far did your (hip lay from the New Town? 

My (hip lay abreaft of the Old Town. 

What was the character of the inhabitants of the Old Town ? 
They always behaved very well to my (hip, the voyage it (laved in 

that river. 

Did you ever hear that they were a ferocious and vindictive peo¬ 

I never .did. 

Do you believe the (lory of Fidler and Doyle to be true ? 

I do. 

Can you account for it ? 

I cannot. 

Do you believe the people of New Town are more ferocious than 

thofe of the O.d Town ? 

I never had any connections with them. 

Have you, from any information, or from any thing you 
J q have 

C 539 ) 

have ever heard, reafon to believe they are or are not more 
ferocious, more vindi&ive, or worfe difpoled than thofe of the Old 
Town ? 

I have heard the Old Town people charge them with bein'* 
rogues. ° 

Quell ion repeated. 

I have not. 0 

Can you account for their cruelty to the two Liverpool captains 
Fidler and Doyle? r * 

I cannot. 

Do you know that the natives upon the Windward Coaft have 
frequently ftopt and detained the officers from Ihips on Ihore, and 
extorted goods for their releafe ? 

I have heard of fuch in fiances, but never law one. 

Do you know that they attempted to feize and adlually boards 
ed his Mijefly’s fhip Chefterfield, Captain Barton, off Cape 
Palmas ? r 

I have heard of that being once done. 

Do you know that they frequently attacked trading fhallopS 
them? atS ’ mUrdered the Crew ’ and P lundered goods on board 

No, I do not. 

Have you ever heard it ? 

I have heard of fuch inftanccs. 

Do you not think that fuch aflions may be the probable caufe 
Of p the cant,on you have ftated, when they come on boart o„r 

It may in fome inftances. 

Have you not heard that the natives on the Windward Coaft have 

b “ fcm=,al ***** ' n t ^ lc ‘ r tranfadtions with the 

I have not. 

* * 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


t 54° 1 

JoviSy 4° die Martii 1790. 

CAptain Hall called in, and further examined. 

Captain HALL. Have you brought the journal- alluded to in your former 
evidence ? 

1 have brought the journal of my fecond voyage. 

Could you not procure the journal of your firft voyage ? 

I have loft it. 

When did you firft difcover the lofs of that journal ? 

Upon looking among my old journals the day before yefter* 

Can you recollect when you laft faw that journal which is 

I cannot. 

Can you recoiled* whether you have ever feen it fince your laft 
voyage was Completed, and when ? 

I have i about feven years ago. 

Has the evidence which you have given refpedling your firft 
voyage been given from memory, or from any written memo¬ 
randum ? 

From memory. 

As a mate on board the Neptune, in the capacity of firft, fe¬ 
cond, and third mate, what was your duty while the fhip remained 
in Afiica, and on the Middle Paflage ? 

My duty upon the Coaft, as fecond mate, was in the hold. I 
was (hipped as third mate on the firft voyage in London river, 
and made a fecond mate the fame voyage, before the fhip left 
the river. I continued fecond mate till the fhip arrived at the 
ifland of Dominique. The captain flayed at Dominique about 
fome bufinefs; the chief mate commenced captain, and 1 came 
home chief mate. The fecond voyage 1 {hipped as fecond mate. 
The chief mate was difeharged at Jamaica, and I came home 
chief mate. I beg leave here to explain my anfwer to the 


precedirg queftion. My duty, as fecond mate, was in the hold, 
when the prnvifions and water were to be ferved, or goods wanted 
for trade; upon every other occafion 1 deemed my duty upon 
deck and in the boats as neceffury. In the Middle Paffage, my 
duty was to ferve out the proviftons, and to attend upon the quar- * 
ter-deck and round-houfe when the Slaves were melting. 

Explain what you mean by neceffary duty ? # 

Over-hauling the rigging, going on Ihore according to the di¬ 
rections of the captain on various occafions, and any other of the 
illip’s duty that was requifite. 

What was your particular duty in the Ihip, in the boats when 
you were fent on Ihore; and was you at all concerned in the pur- 
chafe of Slaves as mate of the (hip ? 

My duty on board the Ihip was to do every thing that was ne¬ 
ceffary, and every other duty required in a Ihip; when I was fent 
afhore in the boats, it was to bring on board fire-wood, and any 
thing elfe that was wanted by the Ihip from the town ; I have been 
fent to the Ifland of Furnandipo as officer of the boat, to purchafe 
yams and eddoes; I never was employed to purchafe Slaves; it is 
not the duty of the mates fo to do at Del Rey and Calabar, the 
captains managing that bufinels themfelves. 

Did all the time that you fpent on Ihore in Africa amount to one 

Yes, to a great deal more; I never llept on Ihore in Africa. 

Defcribe the different times you went on Ihore, the bufinefs you 
went upon, and the places you were at, and how far you went in¬ 
land into the country at any one time ? 

With refpeCt to the different times I have been on Ihore, it is 
impoffible for me to fay; on the Windward Coaft I frequently went 
on Ihore on both voyages to purchafe rice and to procure wood; 

I have been, on the Windward Coaft, about three miles inland as 
near as I can guefi. * 

Was you ever in any higher rank than that of fecond mate 
either upon the Coaft or on the Middle Paffage ? 

I have faid before I was not. 

D ; d you ever go on Ihore for the purpofe of gaining information 
refpeCtmg the Slave Trade, and manners and cuftoms of the na- 

[ 542 ] 

1 was not fent from the fhip for that purpofe. With refpedl to 
the natives, the knowledge I obtained was from the neceffary in- 
tercourfe I had with them on the fhip s duty. 

Can you recoiled! how long you were abfent from the fhip at 
any one time, and who did your duty while abfent? 

1 do not believe I was ever abfent from the fhip more than 
eight or nine days at any one time; and during that abfence the 
chief mate did my duty on board. 

When you were on fhore, did you entruft yourfelf with the 
natives, or did you refide in fome of the Englifh factories 

I trufted myfelf with the natives—I never faw an Englifh fac¬ 
tory on the Coaft. 

Do you mean that you trufted yourfelf with the natives eight 

or nine days together ? * 

No; when I was abfent from the fhip eight or nine days, it 
was when I was fent from the rivers Del Rey and Calabar to the 
ifland of Furnandipo. 

What other time was you abfent befides that when you went 
to Furnandipo ? 

When I was on fhore on the Windward Coaft, or at Calabar. 

For how long a time together ? 

On the Windward Coaft for fome hours; at Calabar fre¬ 
quently an hour, fometimes more. 

What part of the Coaft was you upon, when you went about 
three miles up the country ? 

I cannot recoiled!—it was between Cape Mefurado and Cape 
Three Points. 

Did you underftand the language of the natives ? 

I did not. 

Did you take any interpreter with you, when you went on fhore ? 

I did not. 

Then how did you gain your information refpetting the man¬ 
ner of Slaves being made in that country, the reafons of their be¬ 
ing offered for fale, and other circumftances relating to the Slave 
Trade ? 


t 5+3 ] 

From the traders, who all of them fpeak Engliflj, fome of 
them very good. 

Do you mean to date, that every thing you have faid relating to 
the Slave Trade is hearfay evidence, collected from other oeoDle ? 

Yes ; I have faid fo before. 

On the different parts of the Windward Coaft where you have 
been, did you land with equal fafety as at St. Chriftopher’s and 
Domin ique ?. 

I did. 

Do you know that upon the "Windward Coaft the furf in ge¬ 
neral runs very high, and that the fea breaks to a confiderable 
diftance from the fhore, which frequently makes it inacceflible ? 

The furf does fometimes run very high on the Windward Coafti 
and the fea, in fome places, does break at fome diftance from the 

Can you at any time land on the beach with fafety in a boat ? 

I always went on fhore without meeting with any accident to 
the people or boat. J 

How long was you upon the Windward Coaft. 

As near as I can recolledt, from fixteen days to three weeks each 

Was you ever there in the rainy feafon ? 

I was not. 

Have you ever heard whether there is more or lefs furf there in 
the rainy feafon ? 

I have not. 

Is it not the ufual way to anchor on the Windward Coaft in a 
boat at a diftance, and land in a canoe ? 

I have anchored in a boat on that Coaft, and I have alfo gone on 

fhore m a fmall boat, landed upon the beach with her, and hauled 
her up while we ftatd. 

Why did you anchor at a diftance from the fhore ? 

On account of the furf. 

Why did you go in a fmall boat? 



I 544 ] 

On account of the furf, and not having any bulky articles to 
take on board the large boat ; had that been the cafe, we could 
have effected it in the fame manner as it is done at the Iflands of 
Dominique and St. Chriftopher, which is by anchoring at a little 
diftance from the fhore, and having two long joifts, called fkkb, 
placed over the boat’s flein, reaching to the fhore; which is the 
manner of taking off fugars in thofe Inlands where there is a 

Why did you haul the boat on fhore ? 

On account of the furf, and it being a fimll light boat. 

Do you mean to fay, that during the time you were on the 
Windward Coafl: you could at any time have landed in that 

No, not at all times. 

Could you have landed as often as you have been prevented by 
•the furf? 

I believe 1 could. 

Did you obferve the fame precautions in landing at St. Chrido¬ 
er’s and Dominique, as in landing upon the Windward Coafl: ? 
1 did. 

Are not ports at St. Chriftopher’s and Dominique in general to 
leeward, and guarded by the highlands from the trade winds ? 

The ports I have been in at Dominique and St. Chriftopher’s 
were, at Dominique, Rofeau Bay; and at St. Chriftopher’s, Baffe- 
terre. Thofe ports are at the leeward of the Ifland; but I have 
frequently known the fea breeze to blow very ftrong in both thofe 

Did you ever know the fea breeze to blow fo ftrong as to do 
any mifchief, or to make it difficult in landing? 

1 have. 

What do you mean by the fea breeze ? 

The wind that blows in the day time is generally called the 
fea breeze; and when the trade wind has been far to the fouth- 
ward of the eaft (which it fometimes is) it makes a large furf on 

Is that the regular trade wind ? 


[ 545 ] 

The trade wind is not confined to any one point of the compafs * 
I have known it blow from north-north-eaft to fouth-eaft. 

Does it not generally blow from eaft-north-eaft to eaft-fouth- 
eaft ? 


How many points of the compafs does it ever vary? 

I have faid from north-north-eaft to fouth-eaft, which are ten 

Is not that during the hurricane months ? 

I have known it blow in that manner from April to July, not 
conftantly, but at times, in each of thofe months. 

Cm the wind that varies ten points be called a trade wind ? 

1 cannot fay it can very properly be called fo, but yet it is generally 
called fo. 

_ When goods are to be fhipped on the Windward Coaft, at what 
diftance does the large boat anchor from the fliore? 

I never anchored at a greater diftance than about fifty fathoms 
from the fliore. 

Did you ufe the fame precautions at the ports you have faid you 
have been at in the Iflands of Saint Chriftopher and Dominique? 

At Dominique I did, but not at that diftance, becaufe I had bulky 
articles to take on board, which was not the cafe upon the Windward 
Coaft. I never loaded at Saint Chriftopher’s, I have only gone in 
there in the war, to join the (hips of the fleet; and I have feen them 
life the fame precautions, but I did not do it myfelf. 

If you had had bulky articles, would you have gone fo near the 
fliore as within fifty fathoms on the Windward Coaft ? 

I fhould have gone in fome places as near as I did at Dominique. 

How near did you go to the fliore at Dominique, under thofe cir- 

So near, that joifls of about thirty feet reached the fhore from the 

7 d 


Could you have gone as near as that upon the Windward Coaft f 
1 could. 

** n r e of the part ’ but il was between 

Cape Mefurado and Cape Three Points. 

Could you have done it on any other part? 

I do not know whether I could or could not. 

r , f ‘ j "ivorv is an article of trade on tne Windward 

Coaft" h Ucuftomary with the natives to cut a hole in each ele- 

pba We P^hlfS ve^ttie ivory on the Coaft and I cannot recoiled! 
the circumftance of the hole; the ivory we bought on the Wind- 
ward Coaft was all fmall. 

r rice is an article of commerce on the Windward 

Craft" did'the fh!p to which 'yt belonged call there for the pur- 
pofe of procuring that article ? 

It did. 

Can you recoiled the quantity which was purchafed each voyage? 
About five tons. 

tt wi , i nn „ did it take to procure that quantity ? . 

? m fixfeen days to about tWee weeks; there was another fh.p 
in company 1 with us both voyages, which purchafed about the fame 


Is the rice generally wet with fait water, fo as to require drying i 

the fun before it is fit to ftow away? 

* ]t fometimes is when brought in the little canoe. 

Is it not oftener fo than otherwife ? 

I cannot fay it is. 

I believe ills not; but I cannot fpeak with corrednefs to the num¬ 
ber of times that the rice came on board wet or dry. 

What appearance has the African rice ? 

It has a reddilh appearance. p 0 



[ 547 1 

£>o you know the diftin&ion between red and white rice ? 


What is the diftin&ion, and are they equally fit for the European 
market ? 

The African rice which I have feen has generally a red colour 
externally, the Carolina rice is white; I do not know whether the 
African rice would fell at an European market, but I know it to 
be a very hearty and good food. 

Do you not think that exercife is necefiary for the health of the 
Slaves in the Middle Paflage ? 


In what manner are the Slaves prevailed upon to take that ex¬ 
ercife ? 

In my own fhip, after they had done mefling, a man ftruck upon 
a drum, and they were made to jump up and down; t’nofe ,vvhp re- 
fufed were compelled with the cat. 

Did it often happen that they were compelled ? 

It fometimes happened among the men, but very feldom among 
the women. 

You have dated that the Slaves room was very hot, have you 
never known the Slaves complain of being too cold at night, and 
do they not more frequently complain of being too cold than too 
hot ? 

I never knew them complain of being too cold in the fhip I be¬ 
longed to. 

Was the fhip you belonged to properly furnifhed with gratings 
and air ports ? 

She was properly furnilhed with gratings, but had no air ports. 

Do you know whether African fhips in general have air ports, 
and that an African (hip cannot be faid to be properly fitted out 
that has not got fuch air ports ? 

I have frequently met with African fhips without air ports, but 
fince I have left the Trade I have feen more with air ports coming 
to the Weft Indies than without. 

Were thofe perfons who died on board the Neptune able or ordi¬ 
nary teamen, landfnien, or apprentices ? 


[ 548 ] 

They were moft of them able Teamen, but I cannot diftmguifli 
the proportions; we had no landfmen on board but the cooper 
and armourer, and the carpenter’s mate, I think, one voyage; and 
we never had an apprentice in the (hip. 

Were any boys in the (hip who were not apprentices ? 

I believe there were two each voyage. 

Do you know how many of thofe perfons who died on board the 

Venus were able feamen ? t 

I do not; but the Venus, to the bed of my recolle&ion, loft all 
her officers the firft voyage, except the chief mate and captain. 

Do you know that the York was a fmall veffel not 150 tons 

burthen ? _ . 

I do not; in looking over my journal for that tranfadlion refpecx- 
ing the York, I found it was the York’s boat which w'e fpoke 
with, and which gave me the account alluded to in my former 

Do you know the number of men that the York carried? 

The boat informed us, that (he left Liverpool with 75 men. 

Is itufual for a veffel of 150 tons burthen to carry 75 men ill 

time of peace ? . 

It is not; but I did not know the fize of the York, whether it 

was 150 or 3co tons burthen. 

Is it ufual for a (hip of 300 tons burthen to carry 75 men in time 
of peace? 

The (hips in the African trade carry a great many men, but I do 
not know the regular proportion to the tonnage. 

After you had made two voyages in the Neptune, did you not 
agree to go as chief mate with Captain King ? 

I did; I wiffied to fee the Gold Coaft where Captain King was 
bound, but before the (hip had got in a forwardness for fea I wrote 
a letter to Mr. Calvert, who was owner of the (hip, thanking him 
for his offering me the birth, but that I begged leave to decline 
proceeding in the (hip. This happened in the very year that I finiffied 
my fecond voyage. 

Did you (late, in any part of that letter, that you had a legacy 
left you, which you were going to the Weft Indies to re¬ 
ceive ? , . 

t 549 ] 

I do not recoiled that I did; I told Captain Calvert in the letter, 
that I was going to the Weft Indies. 

Do you recoiled that you did not ? 

I am not pofitive. I had a legacy left me in the Weft Indies, but 
I did not receive it till two years afterwards. 

Did you not go out to the Weft Indies in expedation of receiv¬ 
ing it fooner ? 

I did not. 

You have faid that you touched at the ifland of Annabona, and 
procured fome cocoa nuts and Caflada flour, were thofe all the re- 
frelhments you got there ? 

They were. 

Do you know whether there are refrefhments of live flock, 
plantanes, and bananas to be procured in great plenty there ? 

I faw fome live flock, fome plantanes, and f ;me bananas brought 
along-fide our fhip j the captain purchafed fome of them for the 
ufe of the cabin. 

Were any of the fick Slaves fupplied with any refrefhments of 
that fort ? 

They were not. The Slaves had in that voyage a dyfentery, 
and the captain was afraid to give them plantanes and bananas 
in that ftate j and we had no room upon deck for coops for 


Was there no room in the (hip or boats for live flock, or could 
they not have lafhed the coops on the quarters of the fhip for 
that purpofe ? 

There was no room in any part of the fhip, except in the boats ; 
the boat wherein we might have put coops was a fmall one ; coops 
might have been lafhed on the quarters of the fhip, but fhe had no 
coops lafhed there. 

Do you know that the ifland of Furnandipo was ceded by Por¬ 
tugal to Spain, with an intention to eftablifh a fadtory there, to 
carry on the African Trade ? 

I have heard that that ifland was in pofleflion of the Spaniards, 
but for what purpofe I have not heard. 

Is not the land at Furnandipo high and dry, and, in con- 

7 B fequence 

[ 55° 1 

fequence thereof, produces better yams than the fwamps about Del 

It is very high land; they have a great deal of rain there in the 
rainy feafon. The yams are much better than at Calabar, which 
I fhould fupnofe, proceeds from the difference of foil; and the 
people of Furnandipo, not having any other trade, give the whole 
of their attention to the cultivation of the land. 

State to the Committee all the inftances which you know, of your 
own knowledge, of the natives being carried off by (hips and trading 
boats from Furnandipo, or any part of Africa ? 

I have faid before, that I never knew an mftance upon the 
Coaft of Africa. At the ifland of Furnandipo, m my fecond 
voyage, a boat belonging to the (hip Venus, Captain Jeremiah 
Smith which had been fent for yams from Calabar to Furnan¬ 
dipo, enticed a canoe to come along-fide, with about ten men in 
her; as foon as (hegot very near,the men fired into her from the 
{hip’s boat, upon which they jumped overboard; fome of them 
were wounded, one of whom was taken out of the water, and 
died in lefs than an hour on board the boat; two others were 
taken up unhurt, and carried to the river Calabar to the (hip. 
Captain Smith was angry at the officer for his conduct, and fent 
another officer in the boat to land the two men in the bay from 
whence they were taken. Immediately after the boat had- brougnt 
offthefe two perfons, I went into the bay in our own long-boat, 
and upon fending on (hore two perfons to fill fome water, they 
were furrounded by the natives, who drove three fpears into one 
of the men, and wounded the other with a large (lick. This muft 
have been in confequence of taking away the two men juft men¬ 
tioned.—I know of no other inftance. 

Did the Negroes who were in the canoe attempt to cut off 
the brat; and what was the provocation which made it neceffary 
for the men in the boat to fire at the canoe ? 

Thev did not attempt to cut off the boat. The boat had feven 
men in'her, and was well armed; the people of Furnandipo had 
no fire-arms, therefore it is not probable they would attempt to cut 
off a boat armed and protected in the manner the boat of the 
Venus was. 

Have you ever heard of the natives of Furnandipo attempting 
to cut off boats with Europeans in them; and is it likely that the 
Europeans would fire into the canoe without having had fome pro¬ 
vocation ? T 

I never 

t S51 ] 

I never heard of their attempting to cut off a boat. Sometimes 
they have difputes with the people on fhore trading with them for 
yams ; this was faid to be the cafe in this inftance, but they had not 
done any of the boat’s crew any injury. 

Was the (hip offered you by Mr. Cox a (lore-(hip, or a regular 
African (hip? 

She was a ftore-fhip; but Mr. Cox would have had me purchafed 
Slaves (after delivering the ftores) to carry to the Weft Indies. 

Have you that competent knowledge of the countries of Del Rey 
and Calabar to affirm that there are no Slaves there but the canoe- 
men ? 

I never faw any others, except the women. 

Have you any other knowledge of the African Trade but what 
you have gained in your two voyages as mate, from the year 1772 
to 1776? 

I have not; and from converfing with perfons who have been 
much longer in the fervice. 

As you have faid you never flept a night on fhore at Del Rey and 
Calabar, in what fpace of time did you go fifteen leagues up the river 
Del Rey and return to the (hip P 

J never went more than two miles from the (hip in the river Del 
Rey, except in the long-boat to Furnandipo. When I fpoke of fif¬ 
teen leagues up the river Del Rey, I faid the (hip lay at anchor about 
that diftance from the river’s mouth. 

You have faid before the Privy Council, the country was well in¬ 
habited as far as you went up the rivers, which was fifteen leagues up 
the river Del Rey, and ten leagues up the river Calabar;—how long 
did thofe different excurfions up thoie rivers occafion you to be ab- 
fent from the fhip ? 

I never was more than two miles from the fhip j I faid the fhip 
went up that diftance from the river’s mouth. 

Where, and before whom did you fay fo ? 

I told the Honourable Privy Council that the fhip went up that 

Did you go into the houfes of many of the kings and principal 
traders in the country ? 

I did. 

_ i 



[ S5 2 ] 

How long was it after you quitted the African Trade in 1 77 ^* 
before you went to fee your friends in the Weft Indies ? 

Immediately after. 

To what Ifland did you go? 

To Barbadoes. 

How long did you continue there ? 

About a fortnight. 

Where did you go to from Barbadoes ? 

To England. 

When did you firft enter into the Weft India trade as com¬ 
mander of a veflel ? 

The latter end of the year 1780. 

In what employ were you from the time of your quitting the 
African Trade to the latter end of the year 1780 ? 

I made a voyage to the Weft Indies in 1777, and between that 
time and the latter end of 1780 I was on board the fhip Tartar* 
Captain Edward Fiott, a private fhip of war. 

From what port in England did the (hip you firft commanded in 
the Weft India trade fail, and to what Ifland? 

She belonged to the port of London, and failed to the Ifland of 

How long did fhe continue in that trade ? 

I made one voyage in her. 

Who hufbanded that fhip in London ? 

Henry and Samuel Cox. 

From what ports, and to what Iflands, were your other voyages as 
commander ? 

My fecond voyage was from the port of London, and we were 
loft in the Downs going to Antigua. My third voyage I failed 
from London to the Ifland of Antigua, Meflieurs Lane, Son, and 
Frazer were the fhip’s hufbands ; in that fhip I made a voyage 
from Antigua to America. My next voyages were from London 
to the fime Ifland in another fhip, hufbanded by the fame gentle¬ 
men. My feventh voyage was from London to the Ifland of Bar¬ 
badoes, the fhip’s hufband Samuel Whitehead. My next two 

•j. L 7 voyages 

C 553 ] 

voyages were from London to the fame Ifland in another (hid 
hufbanded by Meffieurs Cox and Sherrin. 

prefent y ° U C ° ntinUC in that ^ and are y ou in that employ at 
I am. 

Are you ihortly bound out for Barbadoes ? 

I am, and expert and hope to fail on Monday or Tuefddy 

Were the offers of the command of a veffel in the African 
Trade, which were made to you in 1781 or 1782 bv Mr CW 
of London, and in 1782 by Mr. Taylor of Antigua,' the 
only lnltances which you mentioned to have refufed accepting 

They were; but I conftantly declared my averfion to the Trade, 
which I believe has prevented fimilar offers. 

Did you ever declare that averfion to Mr. Cox and Mr. Taylor 
before their offers to you ? J 

I did not. 

Do you not apprehend that the property acquired on board a 
private flop of war may be faid to be a traffic, though legaliz- 
ed by adt of parliament, in fome meafure founded in blood ? 

I do not think myfelf competent to anfwer that queftion. 

1 * n °i / he P ro P erty ac( l uired b y the African Trade equally 
legalized by adt of parliament; and if fo, you having given it 

as your opinion that that Trade is perfedtly illegal, are you not 

equally competent to deliver your opinion in that refpedt as to 
privateering? r 

When I was in a private ihip of war, I confidered the war we 
Were then engaged in in a very different light from the wars 
and pillage earned on in Africa, commonly called war ; and 
when I entered into the privateer fervice, the ihip I ferved on 
board was a very refpedtable ihip, 0 f 34. guns and 230 men, and 
I thought and wiihed to have an opportunity of ferving my 

lieutenant 0 ^ and 1 ^ crved on board that ihip as firit 

By whofe labour is the fugar, rum, and other produce of the 

7 f Ifland 

[ 554 3 

Ifland of Barbadoes, which you now gain your livelihood by the 
tranfporting of from that Ifland to Great Britain, manufactured. 
By natives of that country, and Africans. 

Are they called Freemen or Slaves ? 


Are not the means which you therefore neceflarily draw from 
the employment which you are now in, of maintaining yourfelf 
and family, neceffarily connected with that Trade on the coaft of 
Africa, which you have abandoned from confcience fake as being 

founded in blood ? , , 

It is no doubt connected with the African Trade; I knew that 
to be the cafe when I made my former declaration. 

Did you ferve on board the private (hip of war for the good of 
your country, or your own private intereft only ? 

For both. 

Do you know a place in the Ifland of Dominique called Wood- 
bridge’s Bay ? 

I have feen fuch a place. 

How far may it be from Rofeau ? 

A very little way. 

Do not fhips lay there in fmoother water, and where the furf on 
the fhore is commonly of very little obftrudtion to the (hipping and 
landing of goods ? 

I never was more than one voyage at Dominique, and then no 
fhip lay there; I know the furf is lefs there than at Rofeau, but I 
never heard of any other produce but that belonging to the eftate 
of Mr. Woodbridge being (hipped from thence. 

Do you mean by that to fay, that the beach is private property, 
and that no other produce but that of the proprietor of that eftate 
can be (hipped from thence ? 

I do not; I believe all beaches are confidered as the King’s pro¬ 
perty, and free for any body to ufe as far as high water mark. 

Do you not know, or believe, that Woodbridge Bay is the ge¬ 
neral place where all Guinea-men in particular bring up on their 
arrival, and where they take on board their homeward-bound 
cargo ? 

I have heard that was the cafe. 


[ 555 ] 

Is or is not the port at Bafieterre at St. Chriftopher’s directly 
open to the fouth, or to what other point of the compafs ? 

It is open to the fouth ward. 

Do boats, which take the fugar from the fhore to carry on hoard 
the fhips in that road, generally come to an anchor at the dtft&nde 
of fifty fathoms from the fhore, and receive the fugar from thence 
in fmaller boats ? 

The large boats I have feen come to anchor at feme diflance 
from the fhore. 

What diftance ? 

I cannot fpeak with accuracy. 

Do not the boats <vhidh employ fkids 'Come clbfe on the beach, 
and receive the fugar over their fides by means of thofe fkids ? 

I have feen them receive the fugar over the fides and ove'r the 
flerns of the boats. I have not feen much fugar taken off from 
the Ifland of St. Chriflopher. 

Do you not know, or have you not heard, that the furf alt 
Bafieterre is frequently fo high, as to prevent the boats from tak¬ 
ing off fugar for days together ? 

I do not knew that to be the cafe, but I have frequently heard 

Do you know a {hipping place called Half Moon Bay, on the 
windward fide of St. Chriftopher’s ? 

I do not. 

State to the Committee what you know, of your own know¬ 
ledge, as to the manner of feeding, cloathing, lodging, and the 
general treatment of Slaves, as far as your oblervation has oonej 
in Barbadoes, and the other Weft India Iflands where you^have 
been ? 

# I am not competent; and as fo much information has been 
given to the Committee on that fubjedl already, I beg leave to 
decline anfwering that queftion. 

You have been two voyages to the Coaft of Africa, and have 
thought yourfelf competent to give particular information re- 
fpedting the manner of the African Trade j and you have been ten 
voyages to the Weft India Iflands, and yet you are incompetent 
to fpeak of the manner in which Slaves are treated there—State 
8 what 

Captain HALL; 

[ 55 6 1 

what you know of that matter, as far as you may be competent 

thereto ? _ n » 

I wifh to decline anfwering that queftion, as I am really not 

competent; as my duty, while in the African fervice, called upon 
me more immediately to make the obfervations I have given to 
this Committee. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Veneris^ 5 ° die Martii 1 79°* 

CAptain Hall called in; and further examined. 

Can you tell how the receiving a legacy fhould induce any man 
to leave one line of fea-faring life for another, not requiring a 

larger capital to carry it on ? 

I do not know that it would induce a man fo to do. 

Do you think any comparifon can be inftituted between the 
cafes of fighting the declared enemy of your country, in lawful 
war under a commiffion from your King, and of exercifing cruel¬ 
ties upon a number of individuals, who are defencelefs, and have 

given no offence ? 

I think there is no comparifon. 

Do you think that a man, who fhould affign motives of feeling 
and tendernefs for the animal creation as the reafon for not 
chufing to exercife the trades of a butcher or drover, might, with¬ 
out fubjedting himfelf to the charge of infincerity, continue to 
fuftain himfelf and his family upon meat bought of butchers. 

Moft certainly. 

Did you hear the Calabar ftory from any perfons befides thofe 

mu have already mentioned ? , 

I have heard Captain Jeremiah Smith, who arrived a very 
hort time after in the river Calabar, mention the ftory, but not 
n that particular manner—He fpoke only to the fuppofed number 
tilled and carried off, and conceived it to be a very bloody tranf- 

dtion. What 

[ SS7 1 

What was the number of feamen which you heard was loft in 
the Benfon, when you faw her in the Weft Indies? 

I heard that fhe had loft thirty-one perfons. 

Did you ever fee the Slaves in Africa eating with their mafters ? 

I have. 

What caufes in general have you heard affigned for the natives 
of Africa detaining the officers and crews of fliips boats, and 
requiring a ranfom for their releafe ? 

1 have heard that it has proceeded from difputes with the 
fliips and fliips boats, and done by way of retaliation. 

You have faid before the Privy Council, that the furgeon of 
one of the London fliips attended on fliore the king, who had 
been wounded in the Calabar tranfaCtion; was it the furgeon of 
one of the fliips which had been actively engaged in it ? 

It was not. 

Were the two brothers of the king, who, you have faid, agreed 
with Rutter in the particulars of the Calabar tranfaCtion, carried 
off to the Weft Indies on board the (hip of which Rutter was 
boatfwain ? 


Before the Privy Council you faid, that the king of the Old 
Town gave his daughter for wife to a principal trader of the New 
Town, and you have before this Committee faid it was his fa¬ 
vourite woman; can you account for this inconfiftency ? 

The boatfwain informed me fhe was the daughter of the king; 
but the two brothers faid fhe was a favourite woman.—I think it 
is likely the boatfwain might be miftaken as to the quality of 
the woman. 

Are you fure, on recollection, that the Duke of York, Captain 
Bevan, was a Liverpool fhip ? 

Upon recollection, I believe fhe belonged to Briftol. 

Was it your general cuftom, during your voyages, to fet down 
in wiiting any thing you might hear of what had palled at former 
periods, or only the tranfaCtions of the prefent time ? 

Only the tranfactions of the prefent time. 



[ 558 ] 

Did you heai- the Calabar (lory once only, or frequently, from 

Rutter ? 


Was Captain Smith, with whom you failed, of a harfh and 

cruel difpofition, or the contrary ? 

1 never knew an it,fiance of harfh or inhuman treatment prac¬ 
ticed by Captain Smith, in either of the voyages I was with 
him, on the contrary, he was particularly attentive to the fide, 
nf the rrew and the Slaves. 

Can you give any particular proofs of his humanity ? # 

1 remember an inftance of a.woman being purchased with her 
child about lix weeks old; the child was very crofs from mdif- 
rofition and had made much noife at night; the boatfwain 
wifiled much to have permifiion to throw it overboard, he even 
folicited the captain for that permifiion, and gave as a realon, that 
the child would not live, and if it did it would fetch nothing m 
the Weft Indies ; which requeft the captain received with hoiror 

and deteftation. 

When afked, “ Do you fuppofe that the armed canoes which 
“ you mentioned to have feen in Del Rey river were equipped m 
« that manner to commit hoftilities, or for the protedhon merely 
« of thofe who were in them, and tlieir goods?” You anfwered, 
« For protedtion of thofe that were on board them, and their 
“ poods—Do you mean to give it as your opinion, that the 
armed canoes would not take any opportunities that might offer 
of feizing and carrying off any perfons whom they might be able 

to fur prize ? 

1 believe they would. 

When afked, “ Do you mean to ftate, that every thing you 
« have laid relating to the Slave Trade is hearfav evidence, col- 
“ ledted from other people ?” You anfwered, “ 1 es, I have faid 

<i fo before:”_In your anfvver to this queftion, do you mean to 

confine yourfelf to what you had learned refpedhng the Slave 
Trade, to refer to what you had juft faid you had heard on thele 
topics from the traders, or to what you had feen with your own 

eyes ? 

To what I had heard from the traders. 

Have vou often known the rice that has been brought on board 
* your 

C 559 ) 

your fhip fo wet as to require drying, when it has not been brought 
in the little canoes ? 

Very feldom. 

In faying that it fometimes happened among the men, that they 
were compelled with the cat to dance, did you mean that they 
were fometimes only adually whipped, or that it was only fome- 
times neceffary for a perfon to be prefent with the cat to fuperin- 
tend their dancing ? 

It was always neceflary for the perfon to have a cat who at¬ 
tended the Slaves while mefling and taking their exercife; and 
they fometimes received a few ftrokes when they refufed to per¬ 
form that exercife, or to eat their viduals. 

Have you known the furf in the Weft Indies fo great fometimes 
as to prevent your landing ? 

I remember at Dominique an inftance that we could not land 
with either of the (hip’s boats for forty-eight hours. 

Was Mr. Cox, who made you the offer of a Slave fliip, the 
fame gentleman who huibanded the (hip you commanded to the 
Weft Indies? 

He was. 

Did all the (hips and all the captains which you have enume— 
rated combine with the people of the New Town at Calabar to 
furprize the people of the Old Town ? 


How many do you except from that combination? 


What was the name of the captain, and the name of that one 
(hip, which did not combine with the reft in furprifing the peo¬ 
ple of Old Town ? 

I do not recoiled either. 

Have you ever known any inftances of Slaves jumping over¬ 
board ? ° 

I remember one in the river Del Rey. 

Do you recoiled: any other inftance ? 

One in Antigua. 


[ 5 6 ° ] 

If the boatfwain mifinformed yon about the king’s daughter, 
might he not likewife have been miftaken in other particu- 
lars ? 

The miftahe refpedling this woman might have been from 
the information he had received * but the greater part of the 
tranfadtion came immediately under his own fight and obfer- 

By whofe order did the perfon with the cat attend the mefling 
and dancing of the Slaves ? 

By the Captain’s. 

By whofe order did the perfon ufe the cat in any particular 

inftances ? .... . 

He ufed it at his own diferetion, without particular orders. 

You have dated that Captain Smith was a very humane 
man, was the making the Slaves dance confidered as an adb of 
cruelty ? 

It was confidered as a neceffary adt. 

You have faid, that you believed the armed canoes would have 
taken an opportunity of furprizing and carrying off the natives; 
have you known any inftances of it? 

I have not. 

On what grounds do you believe it ? 

I do not believe that the perfons in the canoes would have con¬ 
fidered it a crime, from being in the conftant habit of felling 

Are they in the habits of taking people in that manner ? 
I do not know that they are. 

Do you think the planters in the Weft Indies, or the African 
merchants of thefe days, are at all refponfible for this fuppofed 
tranfadtion at Calabar ? 

I do not believe that any perfon who was not on board the 
fhips, and adtually engaged in the bufinefs, is at all refponfible. 

Do you think it would be juft to punifh the planter, or the 
African merchant of thefe days, for that fuppofed tranfadtion? 

Certainly not. 


[ 5 «« ] 

Is it not a common pradice in the trade to the Windward Coaft 
to employ the boy Slaves on the (hip’s duty, particularly in going 
aloft ? 

• I do not know that it is. 

Do you fuppofe that the boy Slaves in the (hip Benfon were fent 
aloft for want of Teamen, and not becaufe it was the pradice to em¬ 
ploy them occafionally in that fervice? 

I heard that it was from the lofs of feamen in the courfe of the 

From whom did you hear that ? 

From general converfation on Thore; and fome of her people when 
on Thore informed my boat’s crew that that was the cafe. 

And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

Mr. ISAAC WILSON, Surgeon in His Majefty’s Navy, 
was called in, and examined. 

How many voyages have you made to the coaft of Africa for 
Slaves ? 


In what Thip, under what captain, and to what port ? 

The Thip Elizabeth, John Smith, mafter, from the port of Lon¬ 

When did you fail on the faid voyage, and when did you return ? 

I failed on the ioth of May 1788, and returned on the 6th De¬ 
cember 1789. 

What was the tonnage of the Elizabeth ? 

I believe about 370 tons. 

Was The well fitted for the voyage? 

I believe as well as moft vefiels are. 

Were the crew and Slaves as well treated as the nature of the trade 
appears to you to admit ? 

The crew and Slaves were as well treated as in any other (hips. 

7 H What 

[ 5 ^ ] 

What number of Slaves did you take on board ? 

Six hundred and two. 

Were they all confined between decks at night during the voy¬ 

They were, a few women excepted. 

Were they crouded in that fituation ? 


What was the general appearance of the Slaves when brought 
on board the vefiel ? 

A gloomy penfivenefs feemed to overcaft their countenance. 

Did this appearance of melancholy continue? 

Yes, in a great many. 

What number of Slaves did you lofe in the courfe of your voy¬ 

One hundred and fifty-five. 

Of the 155 who died on board your (hip, was there, in your 
opinion, a confiderable proportion, the primary oaufe of whofe 
difoiders and death might be reafonably deemed to be this melan¬ 
choly ? 

Yesj I am of opinion in the proportion of two to one. 

Were the fymptoms of thefe perfons’ diforders uniform ? 

They were generally the fame. 

Did you ever recover any of the Slaves whofe illnefs you attribute 

to that caufe ? 

I do not recoiled any. 

Have you any other reafon for believing that the deaths of thefe 
perfons might be attributed to melancholy refulting from their fitua¬ 



What are the other reafons ? 

Some who were taken ill, and who had not that melancholy 
on them, medicines were adminiftered to them with a very good 


I 563 ] 

Did you ever hear the Slaves fay any thing which confirmed the 
opinion of their melancholy, which you had formed from other cir- 
cumftances ? 

I have heard them fay in their language, that they wiflied to 

Have you any grounds, befides thole of your own experience and 
obfervation, for attributing the mortality of the Slaves in any 
confiderable degree to the defpondency occafioned by their fitua- 
tion ? 

Yes; Captain Smith informed me the mortality of the Slaves was 
owing to their thinking fo much of their fituation. 

Was the flux prevalent on board your Ihip ? 

It was. 

Did you conceive it to have been owing in any degree to this 
melancholy ? 0 

I conceived it in a great meafure owing to their taking their 
fituation fo much to heart, and refufing fuftenance, by which means 

Had you any other very deftrudtive diforders amongfl: the Slaves 
befides the flux ? 

None that I recoiled!:. 

Have you ever heard the Slaves on board complain of heat? 


Can you mention any ill effedts that have refulted from this heat, 
and the confinement of their fituation ? 

Yes, fuch as weaknefs and fainting. 

Do you apprehend it has ever been the caufe of the death of 
Slaves r 

Yes, I believe it has, having feen them frequently brought 
upon deck, fome fainting ; and I have alfo feen fome die within a 
few minutes after they have been brought upon deck, which pro¬ 
ceeded from the corrupted ftate of the air and heat jointly. 

Were any of the perfons, whofe deaths you aflign to thefe 
caufes, in apparently good health before they had been fubieded to 
the operation of them ? J 

I have feen them go down apparently perfedtly well at night, and 

a found 

' [ 5 &4 1 

found dead in the morning, and others in a fimilar fituation as 
that above defcribed. 

Had you an hofpital or fick birth on board your vefiel ? 

We had an hofpital. 

What did the fick Slaves lie on there ? 

Bare planks. 

Did the motion of the vefiel render this very uncomfortable or 
injurious to them ? 

It occafioned frequently excoriations from the moil prominent 
parts of the body. 

Was your lofs of men or of women the greateft ? 

Of men. 

Were the men Slaves generally kept in irons ? 

They were; thofe in a fickly ftate excepted. 

Is it your opinion, that the perfons employed in this Trade can 
purfue it with fafety to themfelves, if the men Slaves arc in general 
not kept in irons ? 

I think not. 

Is this opinion founded on fpeculation merely, or is it con¬ 
firmed by any particular fafts ? 

They attempted to rife on us when at Bonny; a few of them 
jumped overboard, and were picked up and brought on board 

Do the men Slaves on board ever dance ? 


In what does this dancing confift ? 

It confifts in their jumping, as far as the nature of their confine¬ 
ment will admit of. 

What do you mean by, “ as far as the nature of their confine- 
«* ment will admit of?” 

Being in irons, and chained to the deck. 

Explain the mode of their being chained to the deck ? 

On their being brought up, they are placed clofe to each other, 
• and 

C 565 3 

and on each of their irons there is a ring, through which a chain 
is rolled, and fattened with ring bolts to the deck by a lock. 

Are they ever compelled to dance, and by what means ? 

They are compelled to dance by means of the cat frequently. 

Is it common for the Slaves to refufe futtenance ? 

It is very common. 

Are any means of compulfion ufed on fuch occafions ? 


What means ? 

On their firft refufal, mild and gentle means are made ufe of- 
but it that does not fucceed, the cat is generally applied. 

when^bdow ? aVCS ° D *** 3ppear t0 bc much cr °uded 
Yes, they did. 

amongft the Shyest * r recaou ' ons in “ go about 

genCra i ly t0ok off OUr flloes P rior to going down 
amongft them, and were very cautious how we walked, for fear 
we thould tread on fome of them. 

Was there any other veflel belonging to the fame honfe a 
yours, which failed to the Coaft for Slaves ? f 

Yes, there were three. 

State to the Committee their names, and other fpecifications ? 
The firft was the Elizabeth, Captain Wallis, of London • the 
fecond was the Favourite, Captain Bamfield, of the fame norl¬ 
and the third was the Elizabeth, Captain Marfhall, which failed 

London'*’^ 00 * marked ° n her flern “ The Elizabeth of 

Had the Elizabeth of London, the firft-mentioned vettel deli- 
vered her Slaves before your vefTel arrived in the river Plate i 
• one had. 

1,1 Africa - and w 
7 i I was 

f 5 66 3 

I was told {he purchafed about 450, and buried upwards of 200 
before her arrival in the port of delivery. 

By whom were you told this ? ... c 

By the commiflioner of the Royal Phillippine company 01 


Do you know how many Slaves the Favourite had purchafed in 
Africa, and how many {he had loft before her delivery in the river 

Plate ? * 

I was told ftie purchafed 466} the mortality was 73, and de¬ 
livery 393. 

By whom were you told this ? 

By the chief mate and furgeon of the {hip. 

Do you know how many Slaves the Elizabeth, Captain Mar- 
lhall, had purchafed, and how many {he had loft before her de- 
livery ? 

I have been told {he purchafed 546; mortality 158; and de¬ 
livery 388. 

By whom were you told this ? 

By Captain Mar {hall, and his furgeon Mr. Duffin. 

Were any perfons on board Captain Marfhall’s {hip in the fmalt* 
pox when {he arrived in the river Plate ? 


Can you ftate how many ? 

Two or three. 

Did any of the Slaves die of this diforder after delivery } 


plow many ? 


Is this lofs to be added to the 158 before mentioned? 

That lofs was not from one {hip alone; the mortality of the 
158 was prior to the delivery of the cargo of one {hip, but the 
mortality of thefe 220 was from the different {hips after they were 
landed on fhore* 


Where did you obtain the information you have given refpefting 
this mortality after the delivery ? 

A few days after my arrival at the river Plate I was with a Spanilh 
furgeon appointed to take care of the Negroes on fhore. All thefe 
inftances came under my own infpedtion. 

What number of feamen had you on board your own veflel on 
your going out, and what number did you lofe in the courfe of your 
voyage ? 

My (hip’s company, including all, amounted to fifty-five, out of 
which we loft eighteen, fixteen of which were loft by ficknefs, and 
two were drowned. 

Do you know of the number of the crews, and of their lofles on 
board any other of the (hips ? 

Of the number of the crews of either of the other {hips I do 
not know; of the crew of the Elizabeth, Captain Marfliall, I 
have been informed by the furgeon, the mortality was twenty- 

Was there any inftance of filicide on board your veflel ? 


Specify it, or them, and defcribe the circumftances ? 

The firft inftance was of a woman; {lie found means to convey 
below, the night preceding, rope-yarn, or fomething of that nature, 
which {he made faft to the head of the armourer’s vice, which was 
then placed in the women’s room. She faftened it round her 
neck, and on the morning fhe was found dead, with her head laying 
on her fiioulder 5 from whence it plainly appeared that {he muft 
have made ufe of very great exertions to have accomplifhed her de- 
fign, her neck being in that fituation as coming near in contact with 
the upper part of the vice. 

From whom did you hfiar this ? 

It is cuftomary, when any accident of that kind happens, to fend 
for the furgeon; and in the fituation above defcribed I found 

W«s there any other inftance, and defcribe the circumftances of 

There was. A young woman alfo found means to convey rope 
yarn below, which {he made faft to a batten contiguous to that 
part of the platform where {he ufually lay. She made a noofe, 
r and 

[ S« 8 1 

and put her neck in it, dipt off the platform, and put a period to her 
exiftence. The morning following (he was found warm, but every 
fymptom of life gone. 

Did you fee her yourfelf after her death ? 

I did, and made ufe of the neceflary means employed on thofe 
occalions for her recovery, but without effedt. 

You have faid that compulfive means are fometimes reforted to 
for obliging the Slaves to take fuftenance j can you mention any 
particular inftance wherein it was neceflary to have recourfe to any 
other than the ordinary means of compulfion j and if you do, relate 
the inftance and the circumftances ? 

Yes, the inftances were many, but I (hall relate a particular in¬ 
ftance which happened on board, of a young man whom I conceived 
ftarved himfelf; he had not been very long on board before I per¬ 
ceived him to get thin ; we found he had negledted taking his pro- 
vifions, and had at this time refufed taking any fuftenance whatever; 
mild means were made ufe of to perfuade him or divert him from his 
refolution: we endeavoured to make him underftand that he (hould 
have any thing he wilhed for, but he dill refufed any fuftenance; 
we had then recourfe to the cat, which proved to have as little fuc- 
cefs; he always kept his teeth fo faft (hut that it was impoflible to get 
any thing down j we endeavoured to introduce a fpeculum oris, but 
the points were too obtufe to enter j we next tried a bolus knife, 
without any effcdt. In this (late he continued for four or five days, 
when he was brought up by the burgeon’s mate as dead, in order to 
be thrown overboard; but I having given particular directions that 
no body whatever (hould be committed to the deep without my 
having previoully feen it, I was called, and found life (till exifting, 
and that in a much ftronger degree than I could have fuppofed from 
his weak and debilitated date: we repeated our former endeavours 
with as little effeCt as ufual, and two days afterwards he was 
brought up in the fame (late, and in a fimilar fituation as before; he 
now feemed to have an inclination to get up ; we aflifted him, and 
brought him aft to the fire-place, where, in a low and feeble voice, in 
his own native tongue, he afked for a little water, which was imme¬ 
diately brought him, and he drank: we began to entertain fome 
hopes of difliiading him from his refolution, but he again (hut his 
teeth as faft as ever, and he refolved to die; and two days following, 
being the ninth day from his firft perceivable refufal, he died. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 



5 6 9 ] 

Sabbati , 6 ° die Martii 1790. 

MR. Wilfon called in, and further examined. 

Have you ever known inftances of Slaves jumping overboard, or Mr. WILSON, 
attempting to do lb; and with what intention do you luppofe them 
to have fo attempted or done ? 

Yes, I have; and I believe with an intention of drowning them- 
felves: I can relate two inftances of it from our own fhip: the firft 
of which was when laying at the ifiand of Annabona, a Slave that 
was on the fxck lift jumped overboard, and was picked up by the na¬ 
tives j the lecond inftance was when at lea, the captain and officers 
were at dinner in the cabin, we heard the alarm of a Slave being 
overboard, and found it too true, and perceived him making every 
exertion he could to drown himfelf, by putting his head under 
water, and lifting his hands up, and thus went down as if exulting 
that he got away ; the perlon picked up in the former inftance died 
foon after. 

Is the (hip fitted up in a way to prevent attempts of this fort being 
effedual ? 

Yes, it is, by nettings round the quarter deck, main deck, and 
poop, to a confiderable height. 

Do you believe the defpondency of the Slaves, arifing from their 
fituation, ever produces madnefs ? 

We had a cafe on board, cf a man who came on board apparently 
well, but fhortly after became to look penfive and melancholy ; a 
certain degree of wildnefs appeared in his countenance; he began to 
eat his food voracioufly, and lometimes as if infenfible what it was ; 
at other times he refufed it entirely; at length he became noify, and 
made ufeof the expreflion, ‘ Armourer,’ that perfon being in gene¬ 
ral called upon to take the Slaves out of irons when neceflary; he 
continued to dxfturb the fhip’s company and the Slaves for a conli- 
derable time, and at length he died infane. 

So far as your acquaintance with the Negroes has enabled you to 
form an opinion, what do you think of their capacities and difpofi- 
tions, and of their natural and focial aftedlions ? 

We had one inftance alfo on board which induces me to be¬ 
lieve that they are equally fufceptible of affedions and tendernefs 

7 K as 

[ ' 57 ° 1 

as rood: other people. I beg leave to relate the circumfiance * 
When in the river at Bonny, one of the people called Breeches, who 
are ftyled of the higher clafs, was brought on board, he feemed 
to take his fituaticn a good deal to heart, and got ill; but from 
indulgences granted to him (which none of the reft experienced) 
he in foroe meafure recovered. WBen he was in a convalefcent 
ftate, a young woman was alfo brought on board, from the 
fimilarity of whofe countenance and colour we fuppofed them to 
be relations, which we afterwards found to be true: lhe proved 
to be his filler. On their firft meeting they flood with filence 
and amazement, and looked at each other apparently with the 
greateft affedtion. They rufhed into each other s arms——embraced 
—(eparated themfelves again—and again embraced. 1 perceived 
the tears run down the female’s cheeks. The man had a return 
of his former complaint, and his lifter attended him with .the 
greateft care imaginable. The firft thing lhe did of a morning, 
was to come to me and enquire how her brother did. He at 
length died. Upon the news of which the filter wept bitterly, 
tore her hair, and fhewed other figns of diftradtion. We carried 
her fafe to South America, and there delivered her. 

Did you find it difficult on the Coaft to purchafe as many female 
Slaves as you wanted ? 

We generally found more females than males. 

Which fold at the higher price ? 

The males, I believe. 

What number of Slaves were lick when your veflel arrived in the 
river Plate ? 

Sick and on recovery about eighty. 

What was your reafon for quitting your late employment ? 

My reafon for it was, I did not like to continue in a trade that 
did not perfedtly coincide with my ideas, and that was not to niy 
fatisfadtion. • 

In what refpedt was it incompatible with your ideas, and not 
to your fatisfadtion. 

By being obliged to make ufe of means for the prefer vation of 
the cargo, contrary to my feelings and fenfe of humanity. 

. To what means do you allude ? 

The application of the cat, to which I had frequent re- 

courfe > 

t 571 ] 

courfe; and even in the ad of chaftifement or flagellation, I have 
feen the Slaves look up at me with a fmile on their countenance, 
and in their own language fay, “ Prefently we fhall be no more.” 

For what purpofes were you at thofe times chaftifing them P 

In order to get them to take their food. 

Was the captain of your (hip a man. of extraordinary fevcrity? 

No, he was not; on the contrary, never was there a more hu¬ 
mane man, or a man of greater feelings, or a man who pai l more 
attention to the prefervation of the Slaves for the fake of his em¬ 
ployers, &c.—he never permitted any perfon to chaftife the Slaves 
except himfelf and the furgeon. 

Do you know of any veffel having left a confiderable number of 
Slaves by the fmall-pox at the ltland of St. Thomas, or elfe— 

Yes; I have been informed by the furgeon of the Elizabeth, 
Captain Marshall, that while they lay at the ifland of St. Thomas, 
the Hero, Captain Withers, was alfo there, and that the faid veflel 
Hero had loft 159 Slaves of the fmalhpox. 

Were you on board any other fhip in the river Bonny, the crew 
of which had fuffered considerably from mortality ? 

I was on board a veflel, which I afterwards found to be Spanifh 
property under American colours, the Saint Antonio; the captain 
had buried the furgeon, mate, and all the officers (the boatfwain 
excepted), and the major part of the crew; he himfelf was alfo 
taken ill, and begged I would attend him, and order whatever I 
thought neceflary, or whatever might be conducive to his fpeedy 
recovery; I did fo, and found the means ineffedtual—he died go¬ 
ing over the Bar, by which means a Spanifh gentleman (fuper- 
cargo on board of our fhip) went down to this veflel j upon find¬ 
ing Spanifh papers on board, he thought proper to put officers in 
her from our veflel, and the two others which were then there in 
the fame employ. Prior to the death of Captain Daniel, who 
commanded the St. Antonio, he informed me, that he came from 
Carthagena, in North America, went into fome port of Holland 
with the cargo, for which he got goods there in order to purchafe 
Slaves on the Coaft of Africa, and carry them to Carthagena, or 
fome other Spanifh ftttlement. This information he defired me to 
give the Spanifh gentleman who was on board our fhip, and which 
I accordingly did. 


[ 57 2 1 

Did not that Spanilh veffel under American colours Infer more 
lofs than any Englilh veffel you ever knew ? 

I believe (he did, in proportion to her lize. 

In the Weft Indies, have you ever known feamen jump over- 


board ? 


Do you know to what employ the Slaves were deftined, which 

were carried in your fhip to the Plate River • 

We had nothing to do with them after delivery, but were in¬ 
formed by the inhabitants, that part of the men Slaves were fent to 
work in the mines of Peru, and others were fold as fervants to thofe 
who wifhed to purchafe them. 

Might not the expedition of that employment in the mines of 
Peru have an influence on the minds of the Slaves ? 

The Slaves knew not where they were to go> and prior to .heir 
going to the mines they went to Buenos Ayres and from thence 
they travelled to Lima, where they were difpofed of for the purpofe 
of working in the mines. 

Were the Slaves in the three (hips deftined for the fame pur- 

P ° Any perfon who wiihed to have bought them, might have fo 
done prior to their going there ; I therefore cannot fay or w a 
particular purpofe they were deftined. 

Is not the demand for Slaves in South America for the purpofe 

° f rSodd 2 ^ men Slaves were bought for whatever pur¬ 
pofe the purchafer thought proper, as I before obierved; I cannot 
tell they were particularly for that purpofe, of working in the 

Do you know to what employment the male Slaves are put in 

South America ? „. , , . f 

I think I have fully anfwered that queftion before in my former 


Were the numbers in your fhip within the 

by the late regulating adt? 

I believe not, we failed before the adt took 

limitations preferibed 



[ S7Z ] 

Was the regulating ad given to your fhip ? 

Not to my knowledge. 

On what part of the coaft were the Slaves purchafed which you 
carried to the river Plate ? 

At Bonny. 

Do you know whether the Slaves which you purchafed were 
brought from the inland country, or whether from the neighbour- 1 
hood of Bonny ? 

Bonny is itfelf an ifland, I therefore believe they were brought 
from the inland country. 

Do you know whether they were prifoners of war, convids, of 
what their condition was ? 

I do not. 

Do you underftand the Bonny language ? 

No, only fome few words. 

Had you any interpreter on board ? 

We had. 

Did the Slaves on board your fhip fpeak the Bonny language ? 

I do not know, the interpreter explained for us; nor did I ever 
inquire whether the Slaves fpoke the fame language or not. 

How old are you ? 

Twenty-five years of age. 

Where were you educated; by what approbation did you be¬ 
come furgeon; and were you ever examined, and where ? 

I was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, at Edinburgh, and 
Glafgow ; I have been examined by the furgeons of London at 
Surgeon’s Hall, and received a qualification as being capable of 
being a furgeon of any of His Majefty’s fhips of any rate. 

Did you receive that qualification before you engaged in the 
African Trade, or fince you have left it off? 

Before I engaged in the African Trade. 

How many furgeons were there on board your fhip Elizabeth ? 

Three, in the medical line. 

7 L 


[ 574 3 

In what capacity did you make your voyage to Africa ? 

As principal furgeon. 

Had you any knowledge about the continent of Africa, or the 
mode by which the Slaves fold were made fuch. 

I had no knowledge of that fort. 

In what date of health were the Negroes, when received on 
board ? 

We never received any but what were apparently in a good 
ft ate of health. 

How many men and how many women died ? 

I cannot exadtly fay, but I believe the proportion of males was 
two to one, or more. 

Did that lofs bear a relative proportion to the numbers of each 
fex that were fhipped on board ? 

I cannot exadtly tell, as I do not recoiled* the number of each 
fex brought on board. 

Did any of the Slaves complain at any time to you of being 
diflatisfied with their condition on board ? 

They did not complain to me j but I could perceive they were 
not by any means content. They have complained of heat fre¬ 

Explain the fymptoms which induced you to believe that they 
were diflatisfied with their fituation. 

Their refufing nourifhment, and endeavouring to make away 
with themfelves, were ftrong reafons for my thinking they were 
by no means content. 

Whether fea ficknefs has not an apparent effedt on them ? 

Not particularly fo while in the harbour, that I could per¬ 
ceive ? 

Whether fome of the fymptoms you have alluded to, fuch as 
refufing their food, were not in a great meafure owing to fea 
ficknefs ? 

For the firft three or four days we were at fea, we expedted 
that the ficknefs would prevent them from eating, but that could 
not be generally faid to be of long duration. 


[ SIS ] 

Were thofe fymptoms in confequence of the fea ficknefs ? 

I have already anfwered that queftion in my former anfwer. 

Did not thofe fymptoms which you have mentioned go off in 
proportion as the fea ficknefs went off? 

1 cannot think they did, many ftill continuing ill, whofe pri¬ 
mary caufe of ulnefs, I conceive^ was not fea ficknefs. 

Do you remember the Ihip being in any, and what, diftrefs in 
going out of the harbour, or dropping down the river ? 

I do, I recoiled fomething of her being very near on fhore: but 
being particularly engaged amongft the Slaves at that period I 
cannot give any defection of it. P * 

How long did Ihe remain in that fituation ? 

I do not particularly recoiled the length of time. 

Say as near as you can recoiled ? 

I believe we were one day in that fituation; that is a queftion I 
cannot anlwer to a certainty. 

# • 1 

Were the Slaves during that time kept below, and not brought 
upon deckr s 

The men were, I believe ; the women were at times upon deck 
larlyRecoiled ^ ^ * but thefe are occurr ences I cannot particu- 

Whether their health was not vifibly affeded during the time 
that they were kept below, by the diftrefs of the fhip f 

Yes, I believe it was. r 

Do you know whether a fixed melancholy is the general canfe 
of the death of Negroes on Ihip-board ? ° 

1 have already related fome cafes refpeding filicide on board. 

Queftion repeated. 

1 believe it to be one great caufe. 

Explain the fymptoms. 

The fymptoms of melancholy are lownefs of fpirits and de 
fpondency; refilling their proper nourilhment ftilMncreafes thefe 
fymptoms; at length the ftomach gets weak and ill ii r 
digefting their fo 5 : Fluxes and dy'fentedes enfee and" from 


[ 576 ] 

What do the Negroes lay upon in their own country i 
1 do not know. 

At what time did the (lrip firft hoift Spanilh colours? 
I do not recoiled!. 

Did {he ever hoift them ? 
She did. 

Before fhe pot to the Coaft of Africa, or after ? 

f" if was after we left the Coaft of Africa, and were 

Cimft wav to the fouthward of the line. 

Who was the owner of her ? . 

I underftood Mefiieurs Firmin de Taftet and Company were the 


Were they Spanifh merchants, or agents to Spanilh men 
chants P 

I do not know—they might be owners or agents. 

Were they Britifti fubjedts ? 

I believe they were. 

Where did you leave the (hip, and how did you come home ? 

I came home in the fliip to the river Thames, and there 1 lelt 


Is the pafiage from Africa to Buenos Ayres longer 
or attended with greater or lefs riik, than to the Weft Ind 

Ifl Tdo not know; I have never been but one voyage in the 
Guinea Trade, and that was to the river Plate. 

Did your fliip come home under Englifti or Spamfti colours ? 

We had Englifti colours. 

When were they hoifted again ? „ . 

I do not particularly recoiled!; but I believe it was ftior y 

after we left the river Plate. 

Under what colours did you go into the harbour of Cadiz ? 

I have already faid we came to the river Thames under Englifh 
colours; vve did not touch at Cadiz at all. ^ 

[ 577 J 

Do you know what became of the two (hips in company with 
you ? 

I believe they were bound to Cadiz. 

Was the Englifli merchant, who fold the (hip Elizabeth to 
Mr. Tadet, induced fo to do by the late regulations refpefting 
the African Trade; and was that the reafon that induced Captain 
Smith to go to Buenos Ayres ? 

I know nothing of the purchafe or difpolal of the (hip. 

Did Captain Smith ever give you any information refpefting the 
failing or dedination of that (hip ? 

Yes, after it was fettled that I fhould go with him; I underdood 
we were to fail to the Coaft of Africa, take in a cargo of Slaves, 
and deliver them to commiffioners of the Philippine Company of 
Spain, at Montevideo, on the river Plate. 

Had you a Spanilh fupercargo, furgeon, and boatfwain, on board 
your (hip, and what other Spanilh officers? 

We had j and alfo a mate. 

You have dated that your cargo of Slaves attempted to rife on 
you j was that any reafon for keeping a drifter guard over them 
than you otherwife would have done ? 

' I believe it was. 


Do you foppofe that the Spaniards and other nations would 
carry on a trade for Slaves to Africa, if that trade was abolidied in 
Great Britain ? 

I cannot form any idea what other nations would do. 

You have dated that the Negroes complained much of heat, was 
your (hip furniffied with proper gratings and air-ports ? 

She was. 

Did you ever hear the Negroes complain of cold, and delire the 
air-ports to be (hut ? 

Yes; but that was when we got near the mouth of the river 
Plate, where the weather was much colder than on the Coad of 

Was it the praftice in your (hip to dation a White man at night 
in the male Slaves’ apartment ? 

Sometimes it lias been the praftice, but not always fo. 

7 M 


[ 578 ] 

Did you ever hear a White man objedt to that fervice ? 

I do not recollect to have heard any perfon objedt to it, it being 
lb feldom ordered. 

Was you ever in pradtice on your own account, before you went 
on board the African (hip as furgeon ? 

I was. 

When did you quit that (hip ? 

On the 12th of December laft. 

When did you enter upon your prefent appointment in the King’s 
fervice ? 

I believe it was in January or February laft. 

In what rank or capacity ? 

As mafter furgeon. 

What is the name of the fhip of which you are now furgeon; 
what rate is fhe, and where is fhe at prefent? 

The Thifbe, fixth rate, now lying at Portfmouth. 

Is fhe employed in the channel fervice, or bound on a foreign 
ftation ? v 

I believe fhe is bound on a foreign ftation. 

Do you expedt to fail fbon ? • 


What was the amount of your pay and emoluments on board a 
Slave fhip as furgeon ? 

I believe it was about £.147 f° r w h°l e voyage of nineteen 
months, out and home. 

What may be the amount of your pay and emoluments in your 
prefent ftation in the King's fervice ? 

I had rather not anfwer that queftion. 

And then the Witnefs was diredted to withdraw. 

And being again called in j 
He was afked. 

What do you apprehend, or had reafon to expedt, when you 


C 579 1 

entered into the King’s fervice, might be the amount of 1 your pay 
and emoluments in your prefent ftation ? 

Our pay is £. 5 per month, two-pence per month from each 
teamen on 'board for medicines, a fervant allowed us, and in my 
prefent employment the bounty of a fixth-rate, which in the whole 
may amount to about £. 100 per annum, more or lefs. 

Have you or have you not reafon to believe, that the Slaves on 
board the other two (hips you have mentioned were deftined to 
Work in the mines in South America ? 

I have already given an anfwer to a queftion fimilar to that. 

Have you ever heard melancholic or hypochondriac habit af- 
Cribed by phyficiansor medical writers as a caufe of dyfentery ? 

I have not. 

Do you, as a profefiional man, conceive that the grief or me¬ 
lancholy which you have defcribed to have exifted among the Ne¬ 
groes in the fhip you was furgeon of, was the caufe of the fatal 
dyfentery which carried off fo many of them ? 

I believe that the melancholy and penfivenefs of the Slaves were 
reafons why they would not eat; they became weak and debili¬ 
tated, and incapable of digefting the food allotted for them; the 
confequences were belly-ache, and a dyfentery generally enfued. 

Is debility then confidered by medical men as a caufe of dyfen¬ 
tery more than of any other difeafe ? 

Debility is frequently the caufe of indigeftion; which is the only 
anfwer I can give. 

Is not melancholy or grief generally held by phyficians to have 
the effedt of producing a coftive habit ? 

Thefe are queftions in my opinion rather tending to examine 
into the abilities of a medical perfon, and not to the elucidation 
of the fubjedt; what I have already urged was only my opinion 
of matters. 


Queftion repeated. 

It has. 

Was the dyfentery on board your fhip a contagious one ? 

I believe it in fume meafure was. 

What were the merns taken to cure this flux ? , 


t 5 So 1 

Cleanlinefs; clearing the ftomach or bowels from any putrid 
matter that might be lodged thereinj mild aftringents and gentle 
anodynes were afterwards adminiftered. 

Are you certain that the young Negro whom you defenbed to 
have ftarved hinifelf to death, did not die of a tetanus ? 



How then do you account for the difficulty of opening his 
law with fo great a force as you applied for that purpofe, at a 
time when the patient mud have been extremely debilitated for 

want of food ? . 

The force was only manual; the point of the lpeculuin ons 
was too obtufe. I therefore can give no other reafon why we 
could not open his mouth; the application of the other inurn¬ 
ment, called the bolus knife (it being very elaftic) we could net 
ufe much force with it, left it might cut his lips in the opera¬ 

In ordinary cafes, when a perfon is much reduced, and very weak 
from not taking nouriffiment, or any other caufe, has or has not the 
lower jaw a tendency to fall down inftead of being clenched faft to 
the upper jaw ? 

In fome cafes it has. 

As you faw this Negro after he died, what was the lituation of 

his jaw at that time? 

I did not particularly examine into that circumftance. 

Does not the lower jaw at death generally fall down, if not upheld 
bv a bandage ? 


Did your obfervation of the conduct and behaviour of the man 
at the time he alked for water, convince you that the {hutting of 
his mouth had previoufly been, and was afterwards, a voluntary 
adtion ? 

Yes, I believe it was. 

Queftion repeated. 

The circumftances of his afking for water and voluntarily 
opening his mouth, and immediately clofing his teeth again, 
were ftrong reafons why I conceived it was a voluntary adt; and 
finding that the cafe, I thought it unneceflary to make any fur- 

[ 5 «* 1 

ther great exertions in order to compel him to eat, as he ap¬ 
peared to be determined in his refolution. 

Is it your opinion, that that debility of the ftomach which is 
occafioned by long abftinence from food, does frequently produce 
the dyfentery, or increafe the diforder, where any tendency to 
it previoufly exifted ? 

It increafes the melancholy, and we are obliged to give aperient 
medicines, which the weak date of the body is foarcely able to 
bear, the confequence whereof is the dyfentery—and a doubttul 
remedy is frequently better than none. 

Do you or do you not mean to fay, that, in your opinion, 
melancholy is an immediate caufe of the dyfentery, or only that 
it adls as the original or remote caufe, by inducing perfons to 
perfevere in an abftinence which weakens the ftomach, and 
brings on the other diforder, to wit, the dyfentery ? 

I believe it to be the original and remote caufe. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Lunce , 8° die Martii 1790. 


called in, and examined. 

What is your prefent fituation ? 

A furgeon. 

How many voyages have you been to the Coaft of Africa, and 
in what capacity ? 

I have been four voyages to the Coaft of Africa, but only three 
of them to Africa and the Weft Indies ; in the firft voyage I was 
taken at Cape Mount, in the Tartar. 

In what years were you thus employed? 

From 1780 or 1781 to the beginning of 1787. 

In what (hips, under what captains, and from what ports? 

My firft voyage was with Mr. Frafer in the Tartar, my fecond 
with the fame gentleman in the Emilia, the third with Mr. Mac- 

7 N tagart 

[ 5 ^ ] 

tagart in the Alexander, the fourth in the fame (hip Emilia with 
Mr. Frafer. 

What part of the Coaft of Africa did you vifit for Slaves in each 

voyage refpedlively ? t 

My fecond voyage was to the Windward and Grain Coaft, and 
Coaft of Angola ; my third and fourth voyages were to the Bight 
of Benin. 

According to the beft of your judgment, what are the principal 
fources of fupply to the African Slave Trade ? 

Kidnapping and crimes, I ffiould fuppofe. 

Can you give the Committee your reafons for believing that 
kidnapping is one main fource whence Slaves are fupplied to the 
Slave Trade ? 

On my fecond voyage, while laying at Cape Mount, on the 
Windward Coaft, a man was brought on board, well known to 
Mr. Frafer and his officers by the name of Cape Mount Jack; 
when he came on board he Ipoke very little Englifh, in procefs 
of time he learnt more ; he was a very tradtable good-natured fel¬ 
low—this made me curious to learn his hiftory: he told me he was 
One evening invited to drink with fome of his neighbours; when 
he was about to depart, two of the people got up to feize him, 
and he would have made his efcape, being a nimble fellow, if he 
had not been flopped by a large dog ; he afliired me this was a 
common practice in his country. 

Did he tell you this ftory once only, or frequently ? 

He has told me it at different times during the whole of the 
Middle Paffage, till he was fold at Port Maria in Jamaica. 

Did Ke vary in his recital, or was he uniform in the particulars 
of it ? 

He always told the ftory in the fame way, he never varied. 

Was he a perfon in whofe veracity you think you might rea* 
fonably confide, according to the beft judgment you could form 
of him from other circumftances ? 

From his behaviour on fhip-board I think I could; he had ge¬ 
nerally the care of many trifling things of mine; he ufed to wafh 
and mend my ftiirts as likewife thofe of the common failors, and 
I never loft a Angle article. 


[ 583 3 

Can you mention any other in fiances of kidnapping ? 

In my third voyage in the Alexander, at Bonny, a woman was 
brought on board very big with child, which induced me to en¬ 
quire, by means of our interpreter, who called himfelf Billy Fra- 
fer, at Bonny, how (he came to be fold for a Slave in that fituation ; 
fhe anfwered, returning home from a vifit, (he was feized, and after 
palling through feveral hands was brought down to the water- 
fide, and fold to a trader, who fold her to us. In the fame fhip 
and fime voyage, a man was brought on board advanced in years; 
from that circumftance I was curious to know how he came to be 
fold; he replied, he and his fon were planting yams in their fi eld, 
and that they were feized by profefled kidnappers, and fold; I 
learnt this circumftance alfb through the means of the fame inter¬ 
preter. In my laft voyage at Bonny, in the Emilia, I was one 
day on the quarter-deck, looking through the lattice-work, when 
a canoe came alongfide belonging to a trader, who called himfelf 
Blundell Foubre: I faw no Slaves in the canoe j two of the traders 
who were on board, and who feemed to be in the fecret, ftept 
down into the canoe, and handed up a fine ftout fellow, defired 
he might be put in irons, which was diredtly done, and he was 
paid for; the circumftance of his being brought on board in that 
manner induced me to enquire how it came to pafs that he was 
fold; he faid he came to Bonny to the trader’s houfe; he alked 
him if he had ever feen a fhip; replying in the negative, the 
trader faid he would treat him with the fight of one; and he was 
fold as I before obferved. 

Have you heard of any other inftances ? 

A Captain Gould told me, who commanded a brig called the 
Alert, that he had taken a man away from Little Cape Mount. 

I do not know whether this circumftance was known to his own¬ 
ers, but I believe he was turned out of the brig—I cannot fay 
it was for this; but I think it is probable it might have been. 

Did you ever hear it was on this account ? 

1 have heard fo; but I cannot depend upon that information. 

Have you ever enquired of any Slaves in the Weft India 
Iflands, after the manner of their being brought into that fitua¬ 
tion ? 

In my laft voyage at Grenada, I was landing fome Slaves in a 
boat at St. George’s Town; one of them, who had been fickly 
on the voyage, on his being put on fhore entered into conver/a- 
tion in his own count;y tongue with a Black man, who was cap¬ 

tain of a floop, his name was Liverpool. I afked him the fub- 
it& of the convention; he told me, that this man knew his 
father and mother in Africa, and that he told him, that being 
concerned in kidnapping feme of his neighbours, the friends of 
the people had kidnapped him, or caufed him to be kidnapped; 
he at the fame time faid, that it was a common practice in his 


Can you mention any other inftance ? . ,. 

I do not immediately recoiled! any other which comes within 
my own knowledge} 1 have heard of an hundred other accounts, 
but I cannot depend upon the authenticity of them. 

Do you think you can depend upon the authenticity of the 

inftances you have mentioned ? 

1 think I can— Neither the Slaves or myielf could have had 
any intereft in mifreprefentation. 

Can you mention any inftance of kidnapping on the part of 

the Grain Coaft called Crue Setra ? 

In my fecond voyage, while lying at Crue Setra, a canoe came 
up with two Black traders in her, and informed the captain there 
was trade a little lower down } we hove up the anchor, and wer.t 
down to this place. The captain, finding there was no traue, 
faid he wo^dd not be made a tool of, but detained one or the ca- 
noe-men till he got a Slave ; in about two hours time a very fine 
man was brought on board, and fold, upon which the canoe- 
man was releafed. I deflred a Black man on board, who aCted as 
our pilot for that part of the Coaft, to enquire how this man came 
to be fold ; he laid, he had committed no crime, but was furrounded 
ond feized on the beach, and brought on board our (hip. 

Have any circumftances induced you to be of opinion that the 
natives of the Windward Coaft have been fometimes carried off by 

the European veffds? . . , e 

If I mav be allowed to judge from the fufpicion thet many or 
the people'on the Crain Coaft (hew when they come on board 
our (hips, by always (landing as near the gangway as they can, 
and on the leaft alarm jumping into the fea, they are fo ; they are 
the beft lwimmers on that part of the Coaft I ever faw any where. 

You have faid that you think conviction for crimes another 
main fource of fupply to the Slave Trade; do you believe that 

t 585 ] 

crimes are ever falfely imputed for the fake of convidting, and felling 
the party accufed ? 

I do. In my fecond voyage, while laying at the river Ambris, 
our boat came on board from the fhore with feveral Slaves in it, one 
in particular had what they call in their own country the craw-craw, 
which is a kind of fcabies or itch : I alked one of the boat’s crew 
where they got that man from ; the failor told me, he was fiffiing at 
the river, and that one of the King’s officers called Mambooka was in 
want of fome brandy and other goods which were in the boat, but 
not having a Slave to purchafe them with, accufed this man of ex¬ 
tortion in the faje of his fiffij and after fome kind of trial on the 
beach, condemned him to be fold. 

Had you ever information on this head from the Reverend Mr. 
Philip Quakoo, chaplain to the fort at CapeCoaft? 

I had ; in my Jaft voyage, going to Bonny, we ftopt at Cape Coaft 
Caftle to deliver fome goods; I was defired to come on ftiore by Mr. 
Frafer: while Mr. Frafer was doing bufinefs with the governor, the 
dodtor invited me into his houfe in the caftle, and after talking on 
different fubjedts, I afked him how the Slaves were made, and he 
affured me the greateft number were by kidnapping. 

Had you any other information from Mr. Quakoo? 

I do not recoiled! at prefent that I had. 

Did you ever hear of the great men dreffing up and employing 
women to entice the young men to their embraces, for the purpofe of 
convidling them of adultery, that they might be fold for Slaves ? 

I have. 

Were children brought to your vtfiel to be fold? 

Yes, almoft every day, more or lefs. 

Was it commonly with or without their parents or other perfons, 
in the confequence of whole crimes they might be fuppofed to be in¬ 
volved ? 

I never recoiled! their parents coming with them, or any of their 
relations that were known to be fuch. 

Do you believe that many of the Slaves purchafed by Europeans 
are prifoners of war ? 

I believe not, as we underftand the word war : by an African war 
I fhould underftand a piratical expedition for the purpofe of making 
Slaves j and thefe expeditions they term war. 



[ j£6 ] 

Whence did you f-rm your opinion of the meaning of the term 
war, according to the fenie in which it is u(ed in Africa ? 

I have mentioned in the preceding part of my evidence, a trader of 
Bonny, called Blundell Foubre, and at whole houfe I called frequent¬ 
ly_he (aid, the White men went to war like fools, when they knew 

their enemies were ready to receive them ; but their method was to 
go in the night, and fet fire to one part of the town, and as the peo¬ 
ple fled from the flames they were caught by their enemies. 

Had many of the Slaves, when they were brought on board, frefh 

wounds on them ? , 

I do not recollect ever feeing a Slave with a fre(h wound when 
brought on board—1 have leen the (kin of the wrift and arms exco¬ 
riated from the fridion of the country ropes with which they were 

Have you heard, from good authority, that Slaves were bred for 

fale in Africa? . , 

I never heard of fuch a pradice; and from the affedion the 

mothers (hew to their children, I (hould fuppofe it a jeft. 

Ir is not meant to afk whether parents fell their own children, but 
whether you have heard in Africa that there are owners of Slaves 
who fell the young ones that are produced from them ? 

I never heard of any fuch cuftom. 

Do you believe that violent means are ever ufed by the European 
/hips to force the trade for Slaves ? 

I do. 

Can you mention any inftance of this pradice ? 

When I was on board the Alexander, at Bonnv, a captain of a 
Briftol Slave veflel came on board from New Calabar ; he faid, 
when his traders were (lack, he fired a gun into the town, or over it 
n cannot take upon me to fay which), to accelerate their motions, or, 
in his own phrafe, to fre(lien their way. 

Have you ever obferved, in thehoufesof any of the chiefs or great 
men, guns in a confiderable number, as if kept for the purpofe of 
/hew or ornament ? 

I believe there are very few kept for (hew; I have feen a great 
number in their houfes with different kinds of goods, which I always 
under flood were for trade. 


[ 587 3 

Did the guns feem to be kept as in (lore like the other goods, 
or to be ananged and difpofed as if for the ornament of their 
houfes ? 

I mean to fay they lay in a heap with India and European goods 
altogether; I fpeak of Bonny in particular, being more on ffiore 
there than at a; y other place. 

What have you heard concerning the quality of the ordinary 
trade guns ? 

Many of the Black people have told me, that they kill more out 
of the butt than the muzzle. 

What do you apprehend is meant by this phrafe ? 

That the guns often burff. 

Defcribe the mode of trade at Bonny in its various particulars ? 

When a fhip arrives in Bonny River, the captain generally goes 
on fhore to make known his arrival to the king and principal men ; 
a day or two after the king comes on board in his canoe, with a 
band of mufic, to break trade, as it is called ; he is generally pre- 
fented with fouie goods called Daffies; after that, permiffion is 
given for trade. In general Slaves are bought every day, from five 
to ten, more or lefs; but the greateft numbers are brought from 
fairs. A number of large canoes, fome with a three or four 
pounder lafhed on their bows, and full of goods, go to what they 
call the Up Country, where they flop eight or ten days, more or 
lefs, and return with great numbers of Slaves ; I think I once 
heard to the amount of 1,200 : the fhip that has been longefl in 
the river has the firfl choice, and generally fails in a few days 
after; as near as I could underftand this is the practice at Bonny. 
I forgot to mention, that after the king has been entertained on 
board, his parliament gentlemen expert to be treated with a fmall 
quantity of bread and fait beef. 

Did you obferve whether the people in thefe canoes were armed 
or not ? 

They have generally cutlafles—I cannot fay whether they have 
mufkets, but there is always a.quantity of mufkets in the canoes, 
but for what purpofe they are there I cannot tell. 

Do you examine the Slaves previous to purchafing them ? 

They are always examined by fome officers on board j it is ge¬ 
nerally underftood to be the furgeon’s bufinefs. 



Do they appear dejeded when brought on board ? 

All that I have Teen in my voyages did appear fo. 

Did this dejedion continue, or did it Toon wear off? 

With Tome it continued the whole voyage, and with others till 
death put a period to their mifery. 

Have you known inftances of Slaves refufing fuftenance ? 

I have known feveral in fiances. 

With what detign do you apprehend it to have been thus re- 
fu fed ? 

With a defign to ftarve themfelves, I am perfuaded. 

Are compulfive means ufed to induce the Slaves to take their 
food P 

In every fliip that I have been, it has been the cafe. 

Have you ever known them refufe to take their medicines when 
lick ? _ 

I have known many inftances of it. 

With what intention do you imagine ? 

With the fame intention that they refufed their food—that they 
^ould wifh to die. I had a woman on board the Alexander, who 
was dejeded from the moment fhe came on board; fhe was 
taken ill of a dyfentery, and would neither take food or medi¬ 
cines : I often tried to make her fwallow wine, but never could. 
I defired the interpreter to afk her what fhe wanted, or what I 
fhould get for her; fhe replied, fhe wanted nothing but to die— 
and fhe did die. 

Have any other of the Slaves exprefTed the fame fentiment ? 

Many of them have done fo. 

What was the fize of your vefTel, and what was the number of 
yeur Slaves in your refpedive voyages ? 

I cannot fpeak pofitively as to the tonnage. I believe there was 
a very great miftake in my evidence before the Privy Council; I 
believe the tonnage is there ftated twice as much as it really was j 
but I believe the veflels which I have been in might be between 200 
and 250 tons burthen, as near as I can guefs: in my fecond voyage 
to the Windward Coaft in Angola we purchafed, as near as I can 
recoiled, 300 Negroes, and loft between thirty and forty; in the 


[ 589 ] 

Alexander at Bonny, we purchafed 380, and loft 105; irt my laft 
voyage, we purchaled about 420, and loft ji or 52. 

What was the mode ufed in flowing the Slaves in their night 
apartments ? 

When I have been employed in that bufinefs, I ufed always to 
make the moft of my room, and wedge them in as well as I could. 

Were they then clofely packed, or had they room fufficient to 
lie in comfort ? 

They had not fo much room as a man has in his coffin, neither 
in length or breadth, and it was impoffible for them to turn or ffiift 
with any degree of eafe. I have had occafion very often to go from 
one fide of their rooms to the other j before I attempted it I have 
always taken off my ffioes, and notwithftanding I have trod with 
as much care as I poffibly could to prevent pinching them, it has 
unavoidably happened that I did fo; I have often had my feet bit 
and fcratched by them, the marks of which I have now. 

Did the Slaves complain of heat or want of air ? 

They have done fo in all my voyages, when the ffiip was full. 

Have you ever obferved that the confinement in this fituation 
has been injurious to the health of the Slaves ? 

So much fo, that I have known them go down apparently in good 
health at night, and found dead in the morning. In my laft 
voyage I remember a very ftout man going down in the evening, 
to all appearance in good health, and he was found dead in the .> 
morning; 1 had the curiofity to open him, Mr. Frafer permitting 
that, provided it was done with decency: after all the Slaves were off 
the deck, I opened the thorax and abdomen, and found the re- 
fpedtive contents in a healthy ftate; I therefore conclude he muft 
have been fuffocated, or died for want of freffi air. 

Were you ever yourfclf below when the Slaves were there; and 
deferibe the effedts you perceived from it ? 

It is the furgeon’s bufinefs to go below every morning the firft 
thing ; and I was never amongft them above ten minutes, bat my 
ffiirt was as wet as if it had been dipt in water. In the Alexander, 
in coming out of the river Bonny, the ffiip got on ground on the 
Bar, ffie hung on her rudder, and detained us there fix or feven 
days in confequence; during that time there was a great fwell, 
and a good deal of heavy rain; the air-ports were obliged to bs 
ffiut, and part of the gratings on the weather fide of her covered; 

7 P almoft 

f 59° 1 

almoft all the men Slaves were taken ill with the flux: I went 
down repeatedly amongft them; the laft time that 1 went down 
ft II I extremely hot that I took off my flmt . ° 

twenty of them had fainted, or were fainting. I got ^veral °t 
them hauled up upon deck, and two or three of them died, and m 
ofX,eft before I arrived in the Weft Indies. I th.nk I had ten 
down about fifteen minutes, and it made me fo very i • 
could not get up without abidance. I was taken nl of a dyfen y 
myfelf, and was unable to do my duty the whole paffage after¬ 

Have you an apartment on board (hip appropriated to the ufe 
of the fick Slaves ? 

I believe there is fuch a place in every veue . 

What accommodations does it contain for the comfort of the 

S ' The" C accommodation at all, they have nothing but the 
bare planks to lie upon. 

Have you known the Slaves to fuffer from the want of better 

aCC They fuffer exceedingly, cfpecially thofe who are much ema¬ 
ciated, fo much fo, that I have feen the prominent part of their 
bones about the fhoulder blade and knees frequently bare if I 
have put any kind of plaifter or bandage on them, they generally 
remove them, and apply them to other purpofes. 

What are the raoft prevalent diforders on board a Negro 
fhip ? 

I believe fevers and dyfentenes. 

Are the confequences ever extremely noxious and naufeous of 
great numbers being ill at once of this latter diforder ? 

It was the cafe in the Alexander, as I have fatd before, when I 

W as taken ill—I cannot conceive i 

difpuftincf- the deck was covered with blood and mucus, and ap¬ 
proached 0 nearer to the refemblance of a flaughter-houfe than any 
thing I can compare it to; the flench and foul air were likewife 


Do you think that by proper care many of thefe inconveniences 
might be provided againft and prevented ? 

As the trade now hands I think they cannot. 

8 1,0 

[ 591 ] 

Do thofe who are fick under thefe circumftances often re¬ 
cover ? 

I never myfelf could recover one who had a bad dyfentery, nor 
do I believe the whole college of phyficians, if they were there, 
could be of the leaft fervice, for 1 humbly conceive a difeafe cannot 
be cured while the caufe remains. 

What do you apprehend to be the main caufe ? 

I think the principal caufes are a difeafed mind, fudden tranfi- 
tions from heat to cold, breathing a putrid atmofphere, wallowing 
in their own excrement, and being fhackled together. 

On what grounds do you afcribe the ficknefs of the Slaves in 
any degree to the circumftance of their being fhackled ? 

From their dying in above twice the number of the women, who 
are not fhackled. 

Do you believe it is necefiary to the fafety of the veffel to 
fhackle the men ? 

I believe no man would attempt to carry them without. 

Have you any other reafon for believing a difeafed mind to be 
the caufe, belides thofe you have before afiigned ? 

I have known a few inftances of fome Slaves recovering, who, 
I conceived, did not refiedt much on their fituation. 

Have you known inftances of quariels between Slaves who have 
been fhackled together ? 

It is frequently the cafe, I believe, in all Slave fhips. 

Have you known any other inconveniences refulting from their 
being thus fhackled ? 

The inconvenience is great. In each apartment are placed 
three or four tubs, more or lefs j the Slaves that are at the 
greateft diftance from thefe tubs find it very difficult to get over 
the other Slaves to them; and fometimes when one wants to go, 
his companion will not agree to go with him ; and while they are 
difputing, if one of them happens to be a little relaxed, he exone¬ 
rates over his neighbours, which is the caufe of great difturbance. 

Have vou ever known an inftance of a Slave dying whilft ftill 
fhackled to another ? 

In the Alexander I have known two or three inftances of a dead 
and living Slave being found in the morning fhackled together. 


Have you known or heard of any inftance of infurretfions of 
the Slaves when on board (hip ? 

I have. In my laft voyage with Mr. Frafer we ftopt, as I 
have faid before, at Cape Coaft Caftle: we purcliafed eighteen 
male Negroes; they were part of a cargo which had rofe on the 
White men, killed all except three or four, run the Chip on fliore, 
where, I believe, moft of them were taken and fold again. I 
likewife heard of an infurredtion on board a Liverpool fliip called 
the Vulture, and another on board the Wafp, belonging to 

Did you hear of this laft from information on which you could 
rely ? 

I believe I can rely on it; I heard it at Briftol fome time ago. 

Are the Slave veflels fitted up with a view to prevent the Slaves 
from jumping overboard ? 

They are at Bonny particularly. 

Have you realon to believe thefe precautions are neceffary ? 

I am fure they are at Bonny. 

Have you known any inftances of Slaves jumping overboard ? 

1 have on board the Alexander; we had eight or ten Slaves 
brought on board one night, and while the armourer was putting 
the irons on one of them, another run through the barricado-door, 
forced his way through the netting on the ftarbcard fide of the 
Chip, and was either drowned or devoured by the fliarks. In the 
fame voyage near twenty Slaves jumped overboard out of a Chip 
called the Enterprize, Captain Wilfon; as did a number out of a 
large Frenchman, whofe name I do not remember. I remember 
alfo a circumftance of a fick man on board the Alexander, whom 
I faw overnight, and miffed in the morning : he muft .therefore 
have found means to get overboard, as I never faw him after¬ 
wards j the place for the fick in that fliip being under the aft- 

Have you known any inftances of Slaves deftroying themfelves 
in any other way ? 

In my laft voyage at Bonny, we had a fine young woman brought 
on board, who was continually crying, and was emaciated very 
much in the courfe of three or four days; flie refufed her food : 
it was thought proper, for the recovery of her health, to fend 
her on ftiore to the town of Bonny I was informed that Ihe foon 


[ 593 3 

got chearfu 1 again ; but hearing by accident (he was to be fent on 
board the (hip, (he hung herftlf. 

Whatreafon have you to believe (he hung herfelf? 

I faw her brought alongfide in a canoe, dead, but looked quite 
jolly; I fa id to the man, called Billy Frafer, (he did not die of difeafe. 
—He faid, Nc, (lie hung herfelf. 

Did you ever know inftances of infanity among the Slaves on 
board (hip. 

In my firft voyage to Bonny, in the Alexander, I went on board 
the Emilia, then lying in the river, and which was about to fail; 
I faw a woman chained on deck, and I afked the chief mate what 
was the-matter with her; he faid (he was mad* 

Do you recolleX any other inftance ? 

I recolleX, on my fecond voyage in the Emilia, we had a wo¬ 
man on board, whom we were forced to chain at certain times; 
at other times (he appeared perfeXly well; and, in one of thofe 
intervals, (he was fold at Port Maria, in Jamaica* 

To what caufe do you afcribe the infanity in thefe inftances ? 

To their being torn from their neareft connexions, and carried 
away from their country. 

How are the male Slaves ftcured when on deck? 

While lying on the coaft, as they come up in the morning a 
perfon examines their irons, and a large chain is reeved through a 
ring on the (hackles of each, and through the ring-bolts on deck, 
and locked. 

Do the male Slaves ever dance under thefe circumftances ? 

After every meal they are made to jump in their irons; but I 
cannot call it dancing. 

What is the term which is ufually given to it ? 

It is by the Slave dealers called dancing. 

And then theWitnefs was direXed to withdraw. 

7 0 . 

Martis , 

, [ 594 ] 

Martis , 9 0 die Martii 1790. 

MR. Falconbridge called in, and further examined. 

Mr. FALCONBRIDGE. Is compulfion ever ufed, to make the Slaves take the exercife of 

dancing ? 

I have often been defired myfelf, in all the (hips which I have 
been in, to flog fuch as would not jump or dance voluntarily. 

Was it neceflary for any one to be prefent with the cat to fu- 
perintend the dancing ? 

I generally ufed to have a cat in my hand amongft the women; 
the chief mate attended the men, and I believe he had a cat alfo 
in his hand. 

In cafe of any fudden accident, as of the (hip (Iriking, or blow¬ 
ing up, would it generally be pofiible to difengage the Slaves from 
the fetters, fo as to enable them to fwim on (hore, if it was near 
the land ? 

I think firft every man looks to his own fafety. In my fecond 
voyage with iVlr. Frafer there was a (hip, under Imperial colours, 
blown up off the river Galenas, on the Windward Coaft of Africa, 
her name I do not remember, but (he was commanded by a 
Captain Bell. I was informed by the people of Galenas and Cape 
Mount, that mod of the men Slaves were drowned: one woman, 
in particular, we had on board, who had made her efcape, I fup- 
pofe by fwimmifig; her face was very much burnt, but it was well 
when (he came on board our (hip. 

Was more than one woman laved? 

I believe there were ; but I do not recoiled any more on board 
our (hip. 

Was it an Englilh (hip ? 

I was informed fo. The captain was an Engli(hman, or a 

What is the food ufually given to the Slaves in the courfe of the 
voyage ? 

On the Windward and Gold Coafl: I believe horfe-beans and 
rice is the principal food. At Bonny they have generally one meal 
a day of yams, and fometimes they have a little bread and beef 

* iVCn ' hem - 7 What 

I S 95 ] 

What quantity of water is each Slave allowed daily ? 

In the fhips I have been in, in the firft part of the Middle Pafiage 
we gave each Slave three pannicans, each holding about eight ounces, 
or half a pint; but when we approached the Iflands they had as 
much as they chofe to drink. 

Did you ever know the Slaves complain for want of water ? 

I have frequently known them call for it in the night, owing, I 
fuppofc, to the heat of their rooms. 

Have you ever known the Haves ling when on board the (hip ? 

I have. 

Did you ever hear what was the fubjedl of their fongs ? 

I have dcfired the interpreter at Eonny to afk what they were 
finging about; and he has always told me, they were lamenting the 
lofs of their country and friends. 

Had you in any of your voyages any refufe Slaves i 

We had fome in all our voyages, more or lefs. 

In which of your voyages had you the mofl ? 

In the Alexander. 

Can you ftate generally the prices at which thefe refufe Slaves fold 
in the Weft Indies ? 

We had fixteen fold in the Alexander by auction, one or two of 
them fo low as five dollars a-piece. 

Did you hear what became of them after they were fold ? 

I was informed they all died before we failed. 

From whom had you this information ? 

From fome of the purchafers themfelves. 

Did you ever fell any Slaves by what is called fcramble ? 

In two of my voyages they were fold fo; viz. in the Emilia at Port 
Maria, and in the Alexander they were fold in a yard; but both by 

Defcribe the circumftanccs of this mode of fale ? 

In the Emilia at Port Maria the fhip was darkened with fails, 
and covered round; the men Slaves were placed on the main 


[ 59 6 ] 

deck, and the women on the quarter deck; the purchafers on fiiorc 
were informed a gun would be fired when they were ready to open 
the tale; a great number of people came on board with tallies or cards 
in their hands, with their own name upon them, and rufhed through 
the barricado door with the ferocity of brutes; fome had three or 
four handkerchiefs tied together, to encircle as many as they thought 
fit for their purpofe. At the yard in Grenada the women were fo 
terrified, that feveral of them got out of the yard, and ran about St. 
George’s town, as if they were mad. In my fecond voyage, 
while lying at Kingfton in Jamaica, I faw a fale by fcramble on 
board the inow Tryall, Captain Macdonald ; forty or fifty of the 
Slaves leaped into the fea, all of which, I believe, were taken up 
again: our boat took up fome of them. 

Are they divided into diftind lots in this mode of fale ? 

They were not in our fhip, but were placed promifeuoufly. 

How is it afeertained what Slaves every particular perfon pur- 
chafes ? 

I have faid before, that they come on board with cards or tallies 
in their hands j they put them about the necks of fuch Slaves as they 
make choice of. 

From what you faw of the fcramble, do you conceive it poflible, 
in this mode of fale, to provide again ft the feparation of parents from 
children, or that of other friends or relations? 

I believe it is very little attended to ; but I muft do Mr. Frafer the 
juftice to fay, that he always recommended to the planters never to 
part relations or friends. 

What precautions were ufed to prevent their being purchafed by 
different perfons in the fcramble ? 

There was no precaution ufed; but the Slaves themfelves ufed to 
cry and beg that fuch a man or woman (theirfriend or relation) might 
be bought and fent with them, wherever they were going. 

Did you ever know any inftance of a perfon not being allowed to 
purchafe a Slave, unlefs he would alfo purchafe the Slave’s parent, or 
other near relation ? 

I do not recoiled: an inftance. I have heard of a perfon who 
would not purchafe a man’s wife, and the next day I was informed 
the man hanged himfelf. 

* .» 


[ 597 ] 

Did you always meet with a ready market for yoyir Slaves in 
your feveral voyages ? 

We did not, pirticu’arly in the laft voyage ; we ftopt fome time 
at Barbadoes, went from thence to Tobago, there was no demand 
for Slaves there ; went to Grenada, and fold them on the mer¬ 
chants’ own terms ; we were forced to take bil's at very long dates, 
the bill for my own privilege was at twelve months. 

Expl ain what you mean by your own privilege ? 

I mean the Slaves that the officers are allowed by the mer¬ 

Were you ever ort ffiore on the different Iflands in the Weft 
Indies ? 

I have been on ffiore at all the Iflands where I have been, except 
at Tobago. 

So far as your obfervation went, what judgment did you form of 
the general treatment of the Slaves ? 

I ufed to think it very cruel. I had once the curiofity to go into 
a gaol at Black River, in Jamaica; I faw there a man who had 
been fo feverely flogged, that he was forced to have a fack of ftraw 
between his back and the board he laid on , the lacerations that 
had been made with the whip were ffiocking to look at. At Gre¬ 
nada I have feen great numbers of Negroes come to market on 
Sunday mornings, and I hardly ever faw the back of one but had 
fears on it; they have often complained to me, particularly the 
wharfingers, that they were very hard worked and poorly fed. 

Did you underftand whether this perfon whom you fay you faw 
in gaol had been whipt in confequence of a legal lentence, or by 
the order of his mafter ? 

I did not enquire. 

What is your opinion of the general treatment of feamen in the 
African Slave Trade ? 

My opinion is, that they are treated with the greateft barbarity. 

What is their ufual lodging in the Middle Paffage ? 

They have no lodging at all, unlefs in a frigate-built ffiip, where 
they may creep under the forecaftle or aft-deck, there is a tar- 
pawling over the booms ; but for my own part, 1 always preferred 
being ;n the rain to getting under it, on account of the noxious 
effluvia which is continually rifing through the gratings. 

7 R 


[ 59 s 1 

Were the fearnen in your voyages paid part of their wages in the 

Iflands in Weft India currency ? 

As foon as the Slaves were fold, they received half that was due 

to them in currency. 

You have fpoken of the general treatment of fearnen in the Slave 
Trade ; how were the failors treated on board the two (hips in which 
you failed ? 

In Mr. Frafer’s (hip they were treated exceedingly well; he al¬ 
ways allowed them a dram in the morning, and grog in the even¬ 
ing ; when any of them were fick, he always fent them vi<ftuals 
(rom his own table, and enquired every day after their health ; 
and it was a'.ways in my power to give them wine, or whatever I 
thought proper ; if they wanted, it was my fault, not Captan 
Frafer’s : l have often faid in private, and I fay here in public, that 
I believe him to be one of the heft men in the trade. I have ex¬ 
perienced a very different mode of treatment in another (hipj I 
have feen the failors knocked down with the firft thing which came 
to hand, for trifling and imaginary faults; I have feen them tied 
up and flogged with the cat frequently : I remember alfo an in- 
ftance of an old man who had been gunner of one of his Majcfty’s 
Ihips, bnt who was our boatfwain, having one night fome words 
with*the mate, the boatfwain was feverely beat, and had one or two 
of his teeth knocked out—he faid he would jump overboard ; he 
was tied to the Tail of the quarter deck, and a pump bolt 
put in hrs mouth by way of gagging him—he was then 
untied, put under the aft-deck, and a centinel put over him 
all night; in the morning he was releafed j I always confidered 
him as a quiet inoffenfive man. In the fame voyage a Black 
boy was beat every day; and one day after he was beat he 
jumped through one of the gun-ports of the cabin into the river. 
A canoe was lying along fide, which dropt aftern and picked 
him up. I gave him one of my own (hirts to put on, and 
;.(ked him, if he did not expert to be devoured by the (harks; 
he faid he did, and that it would be much better for him to 
be killed at once than to be daily treated with fo much cruelty. 
In the fame voyage a poor man was feverelv beaten, for what 
caufe I never heard. Some time after he was bea en I went 
on the main deck, and heard a feaman grumbling, whofe 
name was Sulivan. I alked him what he was muttering about, 
becaufe I faid to him, “ You were never ufed ill in the (hip.” 
He replied, “ If 1 am not, I cannot bear to fee my ft.ipmates fo 
cruelly ufed.” That night this man who had been fo feverely 
beaten, and ten others, ran away in one -of the long-boats that 

c was 

[ S99 ] 

was left by Mr. Frafer; and, as I have fince been informed, in¬ 
tended to go to Old Calabar ; but getting up the wrong river, they 
were feized by the natives and dripped, and marched through 
the country to Old Calaba r . Two or three, I am informed, 
•died in the m .rch. Tnofe that remained went on board a fhip 
called the Lyon, Captain Burrows. I had this information from 
one cf the number, whofe name was Sermon, and whom 1 found 
in the Bridol infirmary with a bad toe after I came home. I 
can only fay further, that the treatment was of the fame com¬ 
plexion during the whole of the voyage. Since that voyage I have 
made another with Mr. Frafer, and his behaviour was as I have 
before deferibed. 

Was the crew of the Alexander, in general, treated in the 
manner you have delcribed, or was it only particular fatlors, in 
whole cafes feverity might be requifiie? 

Every man in that fhip was beat, except myfelf, the chief 
mate, and Sulivan, whom I have before mentioned. 

Have you at different times fpoken of the barbarous treatment 
of the Tailors on board this fhip to any perfon or perfons ? 

I have. On my arrival from that voyage I deferibed their 
treatment to Mr. Frafer, and to many other perfons in Bridol, 
and alfb to Mr. Norris of Liverpool. 

Can you give any information refpetting the ill-treatment of 
the Reward of the Vulture ? 

In my laft voyage to Bonny, the Vulture was lying in the River. 
I was informed by the King and the Black perfons on fhore that 
the deward had been cruelly treated, that he was chained in a 
boat alongfide the fhip, and found dead in the morning. Since 
this time I have been informed by two Tailors, named Ormond 
and Murray, at Liverpool, that the fa£t was as deferibed to me 
by the Black perfons at Bonny. 

Did the two failors fay how they came to the knowledge of 
this tranfadtion ? 

They both belonged to the Vulture at the time. 

Has any circumftance fallen within your knowledge, which has 
enabled you to judge whether feamen are better or worfe treated 
on board French than Englifh Guinea Slave veffels ? 

I cannot fay how they are treated in the French merchant 



[ 6 oo ] 

What'was the number of your crew in your refpedive voyages, 
*nd how many ftamen did you lofe ? 

In my fecond voyage we had forty-two or forty-three perfons 
altogether, and buried three. In the Alexander we had fifty 
perfons, and buried - nine. In the laft voyage we had forty-four 
or forty-five, and buried three. I beg leave to obferve there is an 
inaccuracy in my evidence in the Privy Council Report, relative 
to the lols of feamen in my different voyages: the account which 
I have now given to the Committee is the accurate ftatement. 

Have you met with any veffels on the Coafl which have fuffered 
confiderably in their crews? 

In my laft voyage we ftopt a fhort time at Cape Mefurado; a 
failor came on board, and informed us that moft of their crew 
were dead; I do not recoiled the name of the fhip, but was told 
fhe belonged to Mr. Barber. 

Have you ever pradifed in the Briftol infirmary ? 

I was a pupil there upwards of twelve months. 

Were many feamen brought to the infirmary during your ftay 
there ? 

A great many. 

other trade ? 

The greateft number that wc had difeafed were Guinea feamen ; 
we had many other feamen brought to the hofpital, but they were 
generally for accidents. 

Did the feamen from the African Trade, who were brought to 
the infirmary, generally recover their health ? 

They have gone out much better than they came in; but I 
think their health was fo far deftroyed, as it would never be per- 
fedly reftored. 

What are the produdions in which you have obferved the Coaft 
of Africa chiefly to abound ? 

1 have feen cotton, wax, ivory, gold, a variety of different 
forts of woods whofe names I cannot defcribe, different kinds of 
fpices, wild cinnamon, all the tropical fruits, the beft rice in the 
world, tobacco, and many other articles which I do not now re¬ 


[ 6oi ] 

Is there any thing peculiar in the foil in which this rice grows? 

I do not know that there isj they cultivate it promifcuoufly all 
over the country. 

Were you ever in Carolina ? 

I never was. 

Did you ever fee the rice grow in Africa on high ground ? 

I have with my glafs feen fome plantations on very high ground, 
particularly at Cape Mount. 

Have you ever fecn the natives at work in the fields in Africa ? 

In my fecond voyage I was once or twice on fhore at a place called 
Manna, between Cape Mount and the River Galenas; I was in a 
plantation there belonging to a Black man of the name of Tucker. 

I have feen his people at work on that plantation. 

Did they work under the fuperintendance of a driver, or with 
apparent willingnefs? 

I never faw or heard of a driver there; they feemed to work with 
a great deal of willingnefs and feeming fatisfaftion. 

Did you purchafc any rice on the Coaft of Africa ? ® 

In my fecond voyage we purchafed a good quantity at Junk, about 
forty or fifty tons. 

Was any loft in the furf in its paflage from the fhore to the fhip ? 

Not that I ever heard of. 

Was this at a time of the year when the furf was higheft orloweft ? 

I believe it was not at a time when the furf was very high. 

Was it in or out cf the rainy feafon ? 

In the rainy feafon. 

Were you ever at Cape Coaft? 

I was, with Mr. Frafer. 

Did you ever land any bulky articles there ? 

I have landed, in a canoe belonging to the caftle, three puncheons 
of goods and an hogfhead of tobacco. 

7 S 


[ 602 ] 

Did you lofe any bulky articles in attempting to land them ? 

We did not. 

Can you make a comparifon between the furfs on the Coaft of 
Africa and thofe at the different Weft India Iflands ? 

I think I have feen the furf as great at Saint Chriftopher’s as I 
ever did on the Coaft of Africa. 

Did you ever fee any cloth in Africa of the natives own manufac¬ 
ture ? 

I have bought feveral pieces of cloth that were made by the natives. 

From what was the cloth manufactured ? 

From cotton. 

Where did they get this cotton ? 

It grows in the country. 

Are thefe cloths ever dyed ? 

I have got fome of them which are dyed with a very beautiful and 
permanent blue. 

Are they dyed by natives? 


Do the Africans ever work in metals ? 

I have feen many trinkets made by the Africans on the Coaft. 

Are they manufactured in a very rude and inartificial manner ? 

No I have often been furprized to fee fome of their work in iron, 
particularly fpears and cutlaffes. 

So far as you have been enabled to form a judgment, is the capacity 
of the Africans equal to that of the unpolifhed inhabitants of other 
countries ? 

I am convinced their capacities are equal to thofe of Europeans. 

What do you think of their temper and difpofition ? 

I have always confidered the natives of the Windward and Gold 
Coaft to be much better tempered than thofe of Bonny; I think 
the difpofitions of thofe on the Windward and Gold Coaft are 
very good. I was once landed very fick on the Ifland of Saint 
Thomas, and I am perfuaded I fhould have died if it had not 


[ 6o 3 ] 

been for the care of a Black man there: when I was better, I 
offered him fome money, which he refilled, faying, he had done 
no more than his duty. 

Do you believe the Africans are in general attached to their 
native country ? 

They certainly are. 

Da you believe they are as much attached to their near relations as 
the natives of other countries ? 

Yes. In my lafl: voyage, at Cape Coafi: Cattle, Mr. Frafer de- 
fired me to choofe eighteen Slaves out of the yard. I objected 
to one that was me 'gre, and put him afide-—I obferved a tear to 
Beal down his cheek, which he endeavoured to conceal. I de- 
fired the armourer to enquire of him what he cried for; he faid, 
he was going to be parted from his brother: this induced me 
to take him. I do not know whether Mr. Frafer knew the cir- 
cumftance; but, if he had, I am fure he would not have been 

Do you think the indolence of the natives fuch, that they 
could not be induced to cultivate the ground, if they had fufficient 
encouragement ? 

I am perfuaded they would work, if proper encouragement was 
given them. 

Have they any notion of making contracts to be performed in a 
given time ? 

They have. When we bought the rice I have before mentioned, 
it was contracted for, and I believe part of it was paid for; we 
found the rice ready at the time it was contracted for, which was 
at about fix weeks distance. 

Do many of the natives appear to have a turn for conducting 
trade ? 

They have all over the Coaft where I have been. 

Have you any reafon to believe that if the Slave Trade were 
abolifhed, any of the natives of Africa, who are now employed in 
carrying it on, might be induced to betake themfelves to the culti¬ 
vation of the foil ? 

I have. A man, whom I have mentioned before by the name 
of Billy Frafer, and with whom I had frequent conventions at 
Bonny, upon my afking him what was their fituation in war when 
they had no trade, faid, they were forced to plant yams. 


[ &>4 3 

Do vou believe the females in Africa to be as prolific as thofe of 


other countries ? , 

I have always thought they are more fo; out of four or five de¬ 
liveries on fhipboard two of the women had twins. 

Did you ever fee any perfons in Africa of the condition of 

Slaves ? m * 

I never faw any that I knew to be fuch from their treatment. 

Did you fee any perfons whom you underftood to be of this 
defcription ? 

I have been told by the perfons themfelves that they were 

What was the caufe of your quitting your employment as furgeon 
of a Guinea-man ? 

In mv firft and fecond voyage I reflected but little on the jultice 
or injuftice of the Trade ; in my laft voyage 1 reflected more, and 
the more I did fo, the more I was convinced it is an unnatural, 
iniquitous, and villanous trade, and I could not reconcile it to my 

Could you have continued in the employment if you had wiftied 

fo to do ? - , , 

I could; and I believe at the time I left it, I might have gone 
again with Mr. Frafer if I had chofe it; I was afterwards repeat¬ 
edly folicited to go to the Gold Coaft by Captain Thompfon. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mercurii , io° die Martii 1790. 

Mr . Falconbridge again called in, and further examined. 

What do you mean by profefled kidnappers ? 

People who make it their conftant pradice of fo doing. 



[ 6o 5 } 

Of doing what? 


Upon what authority do you aflert that there are profefied kidnap¬ 
pers ? 

In a former part of my evidence I have faid a man in years was 
brought on board the Alexander, and from his being in years I was 
curious to know how he was made a Slaves - 1 defired the interpreter 
to afk him; he faid, that he and his fen were planting yams in a 
field, and were feized by people who made a practice of kidnapping* 
and they were fold. 

Is that your only ground for aflerting there are profefied kidnap¬ 
pers ? 

It is not. 

Do you know of any circumftance of kidnapping from your own 
knowledge ? 

The man that was brought along-fide the Emilia in my laft voyage 
I faw feized and fold. 

By whom was he feized ? 

By fome of the traders on board the fhip who belonged to Bon¬ 
ny ; he told the interpreter, who told me, that he was invited to 
come and look at a fhip, never having feen one ; and he was fold as 
I have above related. I was induced to be more curious about this 
man than I other wife fhould have been from his appearing to be 
amazed and confounded when he was brought upon deck. 

Is it the occupation of the men to plant yams at Bonny ? 

I cannot fay who plants them—I have feen canoe loads of yams at 
’ Bonny. I was never out of the town of Bonny above ioa yards 
on the land fide. 

Do the women in general do the field work in Africa ? 

At Mr. Tucker's plantation, which I mentioned before, they 
were all men that were at work, clearing the ground for rice. 


Queftion repeated. 

I never did fee the women at work in Africa out of doors. 

Except that inftance of Mr. Tucker’s plantation, did you ever 
fee the men at work ? 



I ’ 


[ 606 ] 

That was the only plantation in Africa that I ever was on j there¬ 
fore it is impofiible for me to lay. 

If the old man which you fpokc of had been fent to the fhip for 
Healing yams, do you think he would have confefled it ? 

I {hould fuppofe he could have had no reafon to deny it, for his 
treatment on board fhip would have been perfectly the fame, whe¬ 
ther he was a thief or an honeft man. 

Are profefled kidnappers allowed in the different Hates of Africa ? 

I am not fufficiently acquainted with the African laws to anfwer 
that quehion. 

Have you feen many dogs in Africa ? 

I have feen feveral large ones-on the Windward Coafl j Mr. 
Tucker in particular had one or two of the mafliff kind j and the 
Africans on the Windward Coafl will at all times give a good price 
for fuch dogs. 

Was Mr. Tucker an African ? 

He was a Black man, born at Sherbro’, and fpoke exceeding good 

Have you feen dogs in any other part of Africa ? 

I have feen many imall ones at Bonny. 

Were they large enough to hold a man ? 

Not thofe at Bonny. 

Have you feen any on the Windward Coafl that were large 
enough to hold a man ? 

I have. 

Where, and how often ? 

At Tucker’s and at Cape Mount; .1 may haviffeen them at other 
places, but cannot fpeak fo positively as to thofe at Cape Mount, and 
at Tucker’s. 

Do you believe that it is the p: a&ice in Africa to feize men with 
dog- ? 

In my former evidence I have mentioned a man having been 
brought on board the Emilia whom we called Cape Mount Jack; 
this man afl'ured me he was caught and held by a dog till the people 
came up and lecured him. 


t 607 ] 

Queftion repeated. 

From the laft-mentioned circumftance I do believe it; if one 
cafe happened I think others might. 

Do you mean then to inform this Committee that it is the ufual 
practice in Africa to catch Slaves with dogs ? 

I cannot give this Committee any fuch information as that it is- 
an ufual practice; I never faid fo. 

Do you believe it is an ufual pradtice ? 

I believe it to be very common on the Windward Coafh. 

Do you know, or have you ever heard of any other inftance than 
the one you have mentioned ? 

I do not know, but I have heard of many from Cape Mount 
Jack himfelf. 

Does all your information come from Cape Mount Jack on this 

It does, relative to dogs. 

Have you ever been on fhofe on the Windward Coaft of Africa? 

I before faid I was on Tucker’s plantation j and I have been at 
Cape Mount. 

How often bcfides have you been on fliore ? 

I never kept any account. 

Have you been often on fhore ? 

I have been often on fhore at Tucker’s and Cape Mount, but 
oftener at Tucker’s. 

Have you been on fhore on any other parts of the Windward 
Co.tft ? 

I do not recollect that I have, on the Windward Coaft. 

Have you been on (here at Angola? 

Many times. 

Was you ever at a houfe or a plantation, or at any village* in 
Angola ? 

I do not remember ever feeing a houfe there; the town was 
fbme miles from the water fide. 



[ 6o& ] 

Upon what grounds did you inform the Privy Council that the 
religion at Angola appeared to be Roman Catholic ? 

From feeing numbers of the people who came down to the river 
Ambris, with beads and crucifixes about their necks. 

Was it from thofe appearances that you gave the account to the 
Privy Council of their being Roman Catholics ? 

It was not from thofe appearances only ; I was one day talking 
with one of the king’s officers, called Mangova, who told me there 
were priefts in the country. 

Have you feen much indigo and cotton on the Windward 

Coaft ? . 

I have fcen and bought large cotton cloths at the river Galenas, 
and at Bonny. I have feen cotton there alfo unmanufactured. I 
never faw any indigo there. 

Have you feen the cotton plants grow ? 

I never was far enough up in the country to fee it. 

Have you ever feen the indigo plants grow ? 

I have not. 

Did you fate to the Privy Council that there was ptenty of indigo 

and co ton on the Windward Coaft ? 

I very likely may have made fuch a ftatement from the number 
of cotton cloths I have bought, which were manufadured by the 

Was that cloth manufactured on the Windward Coaft ? 

It was, and it is no more like the St. Jago cloths than chalk is 

like cheefe. 

Do you know of any inftance of women being drafted up to en¬ 
tice young men, in order to conviCt them of adultery, for the pur- 
pofe of felling them for Slaves ? 

Never living in Africa I cannot fay I have known it, but I have 
heard of fuch a pradice, as I have before ftated. 

Did you ever know of any villages being fet on fire, in order to 
drive the inhabitants out, with a view of catching them, and felling 
them for Slaves ? 

I did not; but I have heard, as I have before faid, from a 
trader of Bonny, whofe name I then mentioned, that it was very 



[ 609 ] 

Queftion repeated. 
I did not. 

Do you know any inftance of European Ihips forcing a trade? 

I remember, while lying at Bonny in the Alexander, a Cap¬ 
tain Vickers coming on board from New Calabar. He told me, 
and other people in the fbip, that when his traders were flack, 
and not difpofed to go up the country, he fired a gun into or 
over the town. 

Have you feen any inftance of European Chips forcing a 
trade ? 

I have not. 

Can the Chips begin to trade at Bonny without the permiflion of 
the king ? 

I always underftood not. 

If the king did not confent to breaking of trade, would 
firing a gun into or over a town force a trade ? 

1 think it would. 

How then does the breaking of trade depend upon the king of 
Bonny, as you have ftated it ? 

I believe it is more the cuftom to keep him in temper, by 
giving him dathes, than any thing elfe. 

Do you mean to ftate to the Committee, that the trade can be 
carried on with or without the approbation of the king of 
Bonny ? 

I fuppofe it might be carried on without his approbation, if 
it was thought proper by the Englith and French. 

Have the Englifh and French more power than the king of 
Bonny ? 

It is at all times in their power, in Bonny river, to* batter his 
town about his ears at pleafure. 

With what are the Slaves purchafed at Bonny ? 

With iron bars, brandy, India and Manchefter cotton cloths, 
guns, gun-powder, brafs pans, beads, and various other articles, 
which I do not recolledt. 

Is gold duft one of the articles ? 

I never faw any gold duft at Bonny, or heard of it. 

7 U 


[ 6io ] 

Did you (late to the Privy Council that gold duft was an 
article of commerce at Bonny ? 

I did not. If it is fo ftated in the Report of the Privy Coun¬ 
cil, it is their miftake and not mine. It is an article of ex¬ 
change on the Gold Coad, but not at Bonny. I never heard 
of gold being bartered at Bonny. 

Do you know, or have you ever heard of any inftance of the 
French or Englifli making trade without the permiflion of the 
king of Bonny ? • 

I never heard of any fuch inftance. 

If the Negro, which you mentioned to have been found 
dead, had been fuffocated, do you think you would have been 
able to have afcertained it from the appearance of the lungs ? 

I cannot pretend to fay whether 1 could have afcertained it 
frcm the appearance of the lungs; but I know the lungs were 
found, as were all the contents of the thorax and abdomen. 

Do you think it poflible that this man died of an apoplexy ? 

It is certainly poflible, but I think it was not the cafe in this 
inftance, as he did not appear to be a perfon who was fubjedt to 
apopledtic fits. 

May not a man die of an apoplexy without previoufly having 
had an apopledtic fit ? 

He certainly may, but I believe it is uncommon. 

Is the care and cleanlinefs of the Negroes within the department 
of the furgeon ? 

I believe in moil fhips it is not, the mates in general attend to 
that bufinefs; the furgeon has always enough to do in his profeflion, 
and that of the worft fort. 

Do the mates always attend to the cleanlinefs of the Negroes ? 

In Mr. Frafer’s Ihip the mates always wafhed, or caufed to be 
washed, their rooms, and dried them with fire pans ; in many 
other fhips walhing is not permitted, but they fcrape the filth 
off the deck: this latter 1 confider a very bad pradtice. 

Is the attending to the cleanlinefs of the Negroes any part of the 
furgeon’s bufinefs ? 

I ufed to attend to it myfelf, and I have often taken a fponge 
and warm water, and walhed them from head to foot. 


[ 6ii ] 

Is the furgeon or the mate the refponfible perfon for the clean- 
Iinefs of the Negro ? 

The mate, I believe is particularly amongft the men, and the 
lurgeon and his mate amongft the women. 

Is that the ufual divilion of the care, with relpect to the cleanli- 
nefs of the Negroes? 

It was lo in the Ihips I have been in. 

Was it fo in the Alexander ? 

In the Alexander I had a flux the whole Middle Paflage, and 
was unable to do my duty, therefore I cannot fay how the Slaves 
were managed. 

Can you fpeak to the cleanlinefs of the apartments of the men 
and women during that voyage ? 

From the number that had the flux in that voyage, their apart¬ 
ments were very difagreeable j for the difcharge in that difeafe 
being involuntary, it was impoflible to keep them com¬ 

Were they kept as clean as the nature of their diforder would 
admit ? 

I believe that to be the cafe in every Ihip, unlefs, as it often 
happens, that the greateft part of the White people are ill. 

Had the woman, whom you mentioned to have hanged herfelf, 
been afflidted with the venereal difeafe ? 

I never underftood lo. 

If Ihe had been lo afflidted, Ihould you have known it ? 

I certainly Ihould. My opinion is, Ihe had not that difeafe. 

From whence do the greateft number of Negroes come who 
are bought by the Englilh Ihips ? 

I cannot pretend to fay. 

Do the greateft part come from a dirtance ? 

I believe fome of them do, but it is mere conjedture. 

Do you apprehend that a greater number are brought from the 
interior part of the country, or are obtained by kidnapping, or on 
account of crimes ? 

I have faid I cannot fay from whence they come 3 but all that 

9 I hava 

[ 612 ] 

I have talked to, by means of interpreters, have generally faid 
they were ftolen. 

Did any of them confefs their having been fold for crimes ? 

I do not recoiled: that they did; I cannot charge my memory 

with it if it was fo. 

Did all thofe that you alked, tell you that they were kid¬ 
napped ? . 

I have faid before, they did. 

If criminals were not to be purchafed by the (hips, what do 
vou apprehend would be their fate ? 

y t iaine thev would be fet to work in their own country. 

By whom would they be fet to work ? 

By the people whom they have wronged. 

Is the pradtice in Africa to do that ? , . « 

I cannot fay what the pradice is in Africa, never having lived 
1 . - .1 __ nnininn is alked. I Eive it freely. 

Do vou know for what crimes thofe Negroes, whom you faw in 
nrifon at Jamaica, and punilhed, were fo impnfoned ? 

P I never afked, but was told in general they were run-aways, which 

I believe to be true. 

Who told you fo ? 

The Black gaol-keeper. 

Were they committed to prifon by the laws of the Bland ? 
I am perfedtly ignorant of thofe laws. 

You mentioned a (hip in which many fajlors were ill-treated ; 
was the captain of that Ship difmiffed from his employment ? 

1 cannoTfay whether he"was difmiffed, but he did not go agarn 

Has the captain been in any other African (hip fince? 
Not that I ever heard of. 

[ 6i 3 ] 

Coafl, and I have feen many patches of it about Cape Mount with 
my glafs. 

Have you ever feen rice carried down to the water-fide ? 

I have feen great quantities brought on board our (hip at. Junk, 
but how it was carried down to the water-lide I cannot fay. 

You faid you thought that the natives would work if they had 
proper encouragement, from whom did you mean that that encou¬ 
ragement fhould come ? 

From the Europeans. 

Have the Europeans any power over the ftates of Africa ? 

They have always power to get what they pleafe done, when 
they hold out their commodities; the Black men at Bonny* always 
wooded and watered our (hips upon being paid for it. 

Do you think that by means of the trade of this country the man¬ 
ners and cuftoms of the Africans might be altered ? 

I think fo; fo much that I am going to try the experiment. 

When did you quit the African trade ? 

1 believe in the beginning of the year 1787. 

Did your confcience induce you to do fo ? 

It did in the molt unequivocal manner. 

Did you apply for employment in an African fhip at Liverpool in 
the year 1788? 

I did not; 1 defy any man to prove it. 

Did Mr. Clarkfon apply for you ? 

I think Mr. Clarkfon holds the Trade in too great abhorrence 
to have made any fuch application; if he did, it was without my 
knowledge. 7 

What has been your employment fince you left the African 
Trade ? 

In ftudying and pradtifing my own profeflion. 

Do you underftand the language at St. Thomas ? 

I do r.ot underftand the Portuguefe language; all the traders 
and principal people at St. Thomas fpeak Englifh enough to be 



Did you converfe with the man who took fo much notice of 
you when you was ill at St. Thomas ? 

I did, in corrupt Englifh. 

What was the largeft quantity of unmanufactured cotton you ever 

faw in Africa ? 

Perhaps four or five pounds. 

What was the largeft quantity of rice you ever faw there r 
Forty or fifty tons. 

Could you have purchafed more if you had wiflied it ? 

1 believe if our bufinefs had been to have bought rice, we could 
have loaded the (hip there and at Cape Mefurado. 

Why do you think fo ? . . 

From the natives of tbofe two places faying they had plenty. 

Was you ever on board a French African (hip ? 

Yes, at Bonny. 

Are they better accommodated for the reception of Slaves than 
the Englifh vefiels ? 

I know nothing about their accommodation-, but the officers 
told me they had a good quantity of wine given them. 

Are the Englifh African (hips allowed wine ? 

They have generally feveral dozens of wine, but not a fufficient 
quantity to give it every day to the Slaves, as the French informed 

me they do. 

Do the French take better care of the Slaves on board their (hips 
than the Englifh do ? 

Having never been on board a French Slave (hip, but tor a 
very (hort time, all the information I can give on that fubjedt is 
from hearfay. 

When you delivered your evidence before the Committee of 
Privy Council, were you perfonally examined there, or did you 
prefent your information in writing ready drawn up ? 

I appeared there in propria perfona. 

Were you examined viva voce ? 

1 was. 


[ 6,5 ] 

' At whofe iriftance, or by whofe official fummons, did you ap¬ 
pear before the Privy Council for that purpofe? 

I had feveral fummonfes, all of which were figned “ W. Faw- 

kener, by their Lordffiips command.” 

How many fummonfes did you receive before you attended the 
Privy Council ? 

I attended when I received the firft, but after waiting three hours 
I was told I could not be examined that evening, and that their 
Lordffiips would let me know when it was convenient. 

Do you know by what means their Lordffiips came to the 
knowledge of your being able to give them any information on 
this fubjedt ? 

I cannot fay how they came by that knowledge; but I fup- 
pofe, by lome of the committee in London for aboliffiing the 
Slave Trade. I was at that time differing in Broad-ftreet, 

Did you offer yourfelf voluntarily to any of that committee, 
or did any of them requeft you to give evidence before the Pi ivy 

I offered myfelf voluntarily at Briftol to the Rev. Mr. Clarkfon, 
and told him I would give him every affiftance and information in 
my power. 

Who is Mr. Clarkfon, and what is his Ration in life ? 

He is a clergyman of the church of England. 

Has Mr. Clarkfon, to your knowledge, any preferment in the 
church of England? 

I cannot fay. 

As far as your knowledge extends, has or has not Mr. Clarkfon 
employed himfelf in going from place to place to gain information 
refpedting the circumftances of the Slave Trade? 

He has ; at fbme of which places I have been with him. 

State the feveral places to which you have accompanied him for 
that purpofe, and when ? 

I went with him from Briftol to Liverpool in 1787 or 1788. 

Who defrayed your expences during that journey, and during 
your flay at Liverpool ? 

1 1 believe 

[ ] 

I believe my travelling expences were paid by the committee 
in London; but 1 am out of pocket, having expended more than I 

Who paid your expences during your ftay at Liverpool ? 

The fame committee. 

How long did you ftay at Liverpool in that expedition with Mr. 
Clarkfon ? 

1 bdieve eight or nine weeks. 

Did you return to Briftol from Liverpool ? 

I did. 

How long might you have been abfent from Briftol in the 

whole ? . . 

I cannot precifely fay; I believe nine or ten weeks. 

When you went from Brifiol to Liverpool with Mr. Clarkfon, 
were you then fettled as a praditioner in furgery at Briftol ? 

When Mr. Clarkfon was firft introduced to me, I was 
with a Mr. Goldwier, an eminent furgeon in Briftol, by way of 
improvement, as a pupil. 

And where have you generally refided fince you went with Mr. 

Clarkfon to Liverpool ? • 

With my father in Briftol, to whom I am confiderably in debt. 

What were the terms on which you firft engaged as furgeon 
in the Guinea Trade ? 

I do not recoiled. 

Had you the fame emoluments when you quitted the Trade as 
when you entered into it ? 

I believe they weie pretty neaily equal. Captain Thompfon of 
Briftol, in 1787, offered me any thing in real'on that I would afk, 
to go with him. 

Do you underftand the language of the natives in the feveral 
parts of Africa you have been in ? 

Not fo much as to be able to converfe with them in it. 

From whom did you acquire the knowledge you poffefs of the 
general laws and cuftoms of that part of the world ? 


t 61 7 ] 

The knowledge I have been able to obtain has been from perfons 
who were employed on board the fhip, either as interpreters water¬ 
men, or pilots. * 

Were there no other perfons, natives of* that country, of higher 
degree than thofe you have mentioned, with whom you might have 
converfed, and acquired as accurate information refpeCting the laws 
and cuftoms of the country ? 

At Bonny I have talked with the king, and Blundell Foubre who 
was one of the principal traders, down to the canoe-boys. On the 
Windward Coaft I have talked with fome of the firft men there par¬ 
ticularly Mr. Tucker and Robin Gray, king of Cape Mount’; but 
our conversion has been on other fubjeCts than how Slaves were 

made, thofe gentlemen I believe giving themfelves very little trouble 
on that head. 

Did you receive any information as to the general hiftory of the 
Windward Coaft from either of thofe perfons laft mentioned? 

I know little of the general hiftory of the Windward Coaft, I 
never profeffed fo to do; I believe they are little acquainted with 
any thing out of their own towns and villages. 

Does then your knowledge of the productions of Africa, and the 
progrefs in arts and manufactures by the natives, extend beyond the 
account you have already given of thofe particulars ? 

I have mentioned no productions or manufactures but what I have 
feen, and my knowledge extends no further. 

Have you often been on fhore on the Windward Coaft of Africa ? 
In my fecond voyage we were feveral months there, and I have 
often been on fhore, and could have gone much oftener if I had ap¬ 
plied to Mr. Frafer for that purpefe. V 

Were you on fhore at different places and parts of the Coaft ? 

I have faid before, I have been only on fhore at Cape Mount and 
Manna, on the Windward Coaft. * 

What authority have the king and parliament men at Bonny? 

I cannot exaCtly ftate what authority they have, but I believe the 
king never does any thing of confequence without confulting them. 

Have they any power of protecting thofe who refide there, or 
ltrangers who come there to trade ? 

I cannot fay how far their power extends. 



[ 618 ] 

What is the particular flation and duty of the officer called the 

Ma ,t°nt!tcowe 8 nou 1 h of thh Angola tongue tofay vrhathis office 
is, I only know him by name. 

’ Did you never hear, or do you not believe, that he is the firft offi¬ 
cer next to the long? officer. j Wfcve a perfon 

calMffieMa'ngot is fupSior to hint, bu, to this I cannot fpeak 

But is hot the Mambooka an officer of high refpea and authority, 

although not the firft? 

I do not know. 

Whence did you P^'^^SnS- 
charged afilherroan with extortion, in order to n 

ithomffifS/crew, who were on fcore when Ithap- 


Did they tell it you of their own knowledge? 

They did. 

Do you think the boafscrew underftood the language of the place 
did"tcy'dlifC5 on ihore, ihey mud have teen 

and underftood fomething of the bufinefs; 

Do you know any thing of the form of trials of criminals in that 

country ? 

I do not. 

J°of S :f]unk!°d U o 

^u^tt'el'd'idno., but thought it ,o be about that quantity. 

Can you fpeak with certainty that offfiTquamityyoii fay it did? 
time did actually amount to “ | j grieve nobody, except 
1 think it did amount to above th*.J ““ . tt / nfa ai 0 ns 

Mr. Frafer, has got any journal to produce Y 



[ 6 i9 1 

Should you know Captain Frafer’s journal, if it was produced to 
you ? 

I believe I iliould. 

And a book being (hewn to the Witnefs; 

He was afked. 

Do you believe that to be Captain Frafer's journal or trade book ? 
I believe it is. 

[Then the faidbook was delivered in.] 

In what fpace of time was the quantity of rice, which you faid was 
then bought, iliipped on board your (hip ? 

I cannot (peak pofitively to the time or quantity. 

Did it take you a month to load that quantity ? 

I only know we left fome goods at Junk, and came back and re¬ 
ceived the rice agreed for. 

Did it take you one; two, or three months to load this rice ? 

Having no book to refer to, I cannot mention any time with any 
degree of accuracy. 

Was there any interruption by the furf in the (hipping of it ? 

If there was, it did not come within my knowledge. 

Did you lay on board the Ihip generally during the taking in that 
rice ? 

I was always on board the (hip. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


jfovis y ii° die Mar tit 1790. 

Mr . Falconbridge called 


and further examined. 

Mr. FALCONBRIDGE. Do you recoiled! the time when the (hip anchored off Junk, and 
began to take in this rice ? 

I do not, having no book to refer to. 

To the beft of your recollection, was it in either July, Auguft, or 
September 1783 ? 

I do not know in what year the tranfaCtion pafled, whether in 1782 
or 1783. 

At what period was the rice contracted for to be delivered ? 

I do not know. 

You have faid that the rice was contradted for to be delivered in 
about fix weeks, and that it was ready at the time agreed upon j was 
it delivered accordingly at the time agreed upon ? 

I think it was: if I am wrong it is not intentionally fo. 

Did you ever fee any of this rice delivered ? 

I did. 

In what packages or veflels was it delivered ? 

It was generally brought along-fide the fhip in a canoe, in a fort of 
fcalket of their own making. 

Are the bafkets generally called crews, or by what other name ? 

I ufed to underftand them by the name of bafkets. 

Did you ever hear them called crews ? 

I might, but I do not recolledt at prefent that I did. I have feen 
fmall quantities of rice brought on board in boxes or old liquor cafes. 

What might thefe bafkets hold in point of weight ? 

Having never, as I remember, weighed one, I cannot fay. 

What rule do you go by then in faying that the quantity delivered 
amounted to between forty or fifty tons ? 


[ 621 } 

When Mr. Frafer was making the agreement,, particularly with 
a man who called himtelf Jofe Will, I heard the word tons feve- 
ral times mentioned, and I imagined to the number I have before 
ftated: whether they meant as we do, twenty hundred weight to 
the ton, I cannot fay. I have never pretended to be very accurate 
on this fubjedt. 

Did you underhand it was twenty hundred weight to the ton, 
or do you mean to hate it fo now ? 

I did underhand it was twenty hundred weight to the ton. 

Then you cannot recolledl by what meafure the rice was deli¬ 
vered to Captain Frafer ? 

1 do not recollect whether it was weighed or meafured. 

Which does the expreffion of forty or fifty tons, as applied to 
rice, imply, weight or meafure ? 

It certainly applies to weight, but I have known perfons guefs 
at tonnage by the bulk of things. 

Did the hulk of the bafkets or the liquor cafes you have men¬ 
tioned, give you fufficient grounds to afcertain the quantity of rice 
in weight delivered? 

I have repeatedly faid that I could not be accurate in this rice 
bufinefs, and that it was matter of opinion and conjecture. 

Then the following entries from Captain Frafer’s journal or 
trade book, delivered in yefterday, were read; and are as 
followeth; viz. 

Junk. “ Sepi r 19, 1783. Jofe Will, King Will, and 
“ Jos Weft, jointly, to 150lb. tobacco, 20 
“ kegs powd. 6 kettles, 2 bafts, 4 nicanees, 
“ 20 yds plains, 3 out fide jackets ioglls. bdy. 
“ 20 couteaus—By to pay in 40 days 24.0 bafk- 
«* ets of rice to contain a certain meafure, for 
“ which lelt a girl Slave as fecurity.” 

“ Sept r 21 ft, 1783. Tom Wilfon, to 75 lb. to- 
u bacco, 10 kegs powder, 3 kettles, 1 baft, 
** 2 nicanees, 10 yds plains, 1 outfide jacket, 
“ 5 glls. bdy. 1 couteau—By to pay 120 
“ bafkets of fice, for which he lelt cne of his 
** people in pawn.” 

7 Z 


Crue Setra. “' 
“ 06 tr 


Setra Crue. “, 
Crue Setra. ** 



Crue Setra. ** 


[ 622 ] 

«* Jofe Campbell, to 20lb. tobacco, 1 nicanee, 

« 6 yards plains, I outfide jacket, 3 glls. bdy. 

«* 1 kettle, 3 kegs powder, 16 couteaus—By 
“ to pay 45 bafkets of rice, for which left one 
“ little boy in pawn.” 

‘ c 22. Robin Campbell, to 651b. tobacco, 1 out— 
“ fide jacket, 15 galls, brandy, 3 kettles, 1 baft, 
“ 1 tapfeel, 1 nicanee, 1 doz. couteaus, 4 lock% 

«« 10 yds. plains, 10 kegs powder, 3lanthorns, 

“ 3 bunches B. C. 4 doz. candles—By to pay 
“ 140 crews rice, for which left one man in 
“ pawn.” 

“ Robin Gray. To 751b. tobacco, 1 outfide 
“ jacket, 3 kettles, 1 baft, 1 tapfeel, 1 nicanee, 
“ 5 galls bdy. 16 couteaus, 10 yds plains, 10 
“ kegs powder—By to pay 120 crews rice.” 

^o. 700 rice to 401b. tobacco.” 

1. 10 cwt. rice, fome plantains and cafiada—To 
“ 50 lb. tobacco, 2 jugs brandy.” 

. 4 fcrevilas, 131b. and 3 cwt. rice—To 30 lb, 
“ tobacco.” 

3. 3 cwt. rice, 10 fcrevilas, 271b. and fome plan- 
“ tains—To 30 lb. tobacco.” 

7. 1 keg powder, 20 lb. tobacco, 1 iron bar—for a 

“ tortoife, fome plantains and rice.” 

“ 10 cwt. rice, fome cafiada—To 60 lb. tobac- 
** co, 5 gallons brandy.” 

8. 10 cwt. rice to 40 lb. tobacco j fome plantains 

“ and firewood to 10 lb. D°.” 

10. 9 cwt. rice to 55 lb* tobacco.” 

12. 5 fcrevilas, 14 lb. 2 cwt. rice, fome plantains 
and cafiada. To 22 lb. tobacco.” 

13- 3 fcrevilas, 81 b. 1 bullock, 2 cwt. rice—To 
“ 1 iron bar, 20 lb. tobacco, 6 baft, 3 yards 
“ plains.” 

15. 4 cwt. rice—To 30 lb. tobacco.” 



C 623 ] 

“ 16. 7 cwt. rice—To 75 lb. tobacco.” 

Junk. c< Nov. 5 to 10. Received all the rice and Slave.', for which 

“ advanced goods, and difcharged the 
“ pawns.” 

Was any of this rice, as you recoiled*, damaged in its paflage 
to the (hip from the fhore ? 

I do not recoiled* that it was. 

Do you or do you not recoiled* laying two days, or any other 
time, off Manna, to dry the rice ? 

I do not recoiled* what time we lay off Manna, or for what 
purpole. I believe the rain often wetted the rice in the canoes, 
for the rain on that coaft is very violent at times. 

Do you recoiled* the rice being wet from the furf in comino- 
on board the fhip ? 

I do not know that it was. 

Do you remember the lofs of any of Captain Frafer’s goods by 
the furf or fwell of the fea, as they were landing them for Henry 
Tucker, or any other perfon near Manna, in the year 1783 ? 

I do not remember it if it happened. 

Do you recoiled* Captain Frafer being detained on fhore at or 
near Manna, by the height of the furf, and prevented from failing 
for. a day or two ? 

I do not remember that he was ever detained on that account. 

Do you recoiled* how many Slaves you carried in the Emilia 
from the Coaft of Africa, in the voyage of 1783 and 1784 l 

I have faid before, I believe about 300. 

How many of that number did you lofe in the Middle Paffage ? 

I think till our arrival at Port Maria in Jamaica we loft between 
thirty and forty. 

How many Slaves did you adtually fell of that cargo at Jamaica, 
to the beft of your recolledtion ? 

I cannot l'peak pofitively to that queftion. 

Do you know who were the Guinea fadtors who fold that cargo 
at Jamaica ? 


I believe 

[ 1 

I believe Allans and Campbell, I have had a biU draw* by 

An Account of Sales, figned - Allans and Campbell,” 
being (hewn to the W itnefs. 

Tin vnn know the hand-writing of thole perfons ■ . 

& lignatures to the account 1 behave ,0 be then 


Then the faid Account was delivered in, and read * 
and is inferted in pages 637, 638, 639, 040. 

Did vou ever at any one time, fee in any part of Africa a quan- 
tity of rice, cott’ou, o/indigo fufficien. to load a velfel of 2 oo tons 

bU i‘ never did on the Coaft ; what quantity there maybe inland, I 
do not know. 

How far have you been in the inland part of the country «n 
^ fjT 1C3 ^ 

But a very little way, fcarce a mile. 

Did you frequently, or at any time, deep on (bore there ? 

I very feldom dept on diore. 

ldept^oncTor ttvfceon (hore at Bonny j I do not remember 
that I have at any other place. 

Do you know of C.ptain Frafer ever having refufed to pur- 
chafe any likely good female Slave ? 

I do not. 

From the knowledge you have of the laws snd cuftoms of the 
African country, do you believe that kidnapping is tolerated there, 
and that it can be pradifed with impunity when difeovere - 

I have faid before, that 1 bad but little knowledge of the Afri, 
can laws therefore cannot fay whether kidnapping ^ tolerated or 
not ; but’ the inftances I have mentioned have been related by 
Negroes themfelves. 

Did you underftand from them that kidnapping was an avowed 

pradice’ in the country l 
T rertainlv d:d. 

[ 6*S I 

Avowed by ihe government of the country, or how do you ejf* 
plain the word ‘ avowed ?’ 

They told me it was a very common pra£tice. 

Did you underftand from them that the laws allowed of it ? 

I never converfed with them about their laws; my curiofity in 
general led me no further than to enquire how they came there, 
or by what means. 

Do you believe that Captain Frafer, or any other mailer of a 
fhip in that trade, of the fame difpofition which you have afcribed 
to him, would purchafe a Slave, knowing him to have been kid¬ 
napped ? 

I believe Captain Frafer, or any other captain that goes for 
Slaves, feldom trouble themfelves how they were caught or made 

Queftion repeated. 

I believe they all would. 

Did you ever know Captain Frafer knowingly to have been 
guilty of fuch a practice ? 

I have mentioned a circumftance, in my lafl: voyage to Bonny, 
of a man coming along-fide the fhip, under pretence of feeing her, 
and was fold. Whether Captain Frafer knew it or not, 1 cannot 
tell j the man was paid for on board the fhip. 

When the fhip Alexander run aground on the bar, in coming 
out of the river Bonny, did (he lay in an upright fituation, or did 
fhe heave ? 

After giving feveral thumps we kept the fail fet, and fhe 
worked herfelf into deep water, or afloat, when we came to an 

You have faid you have never been able to cure a man who has 
had a bad dyfentery; do you think that every furgeon of a Slave 
fhip has had fuch ill fuccefs ? 

I believe every man of candour will acknowledge it. I have 
often palliated the fymptoms by large dolls of opium, but never 
remember effecting a perfedl cure. I mean to apply this obferva- 
tion to fhip-board. 

Did you ever know of an inftance in Captain Frafer*s fhip of a 
Slave dying while fhackled to another ? 

I think I did not—but I have in the Alexander. 

8 A 


[ 626 ] 

In the cafe of 2 hidden death, and when there is no external 
appearance of injury, in what part of the bo y .s the caufe of 
fuch death moft likely to be found on difieftion . 

I think it may be found in various parts; perhaps from t p 

ture of fome large vefiel. 

As a nrofeflional man, you are afked, whether the caufe of 
fudden death is or is not oftener to be found in the head than in 

TlttltS in all the heads I have opened, and 
feen opened, the brain was generally found, or ha no appearanc 
of difeafe. • 

As vou opened the thorax and abdomen of the Slave who died 
fuddenly o/board the Emilia, why did you not alfo open the head, 

‘“tVry'mrthLtoowfany thing of anatomy, likewife knows 
that opening the head in a dextrous manner, fo as to expofe the 
brdn B ofttn no eafy thing, and I had neither time nor conve- 
niencies in that inftance to do it; I was forced to do it at candle¬ 
light, upon the deck, after all the Slaves were below. 

You have faid, that you think the treatment of the Slaves in 
the Weft India iflands, from the two inftances you have adduced 
was very cruel; ftate the different iflands belonging to Great 

Britain which you have been in ? 

Grenada and Jamaica. 

Have you never been at St. Chriftopher s ? 

1 have touched there. 

How often, and for how a long time, have you been on Ihore 

31 When "we 0 touched there in the Emilia, in ,782 or .783, Mr- 
Frafer went on Ihore there, and we flood off and on till he cam 
t vxrtic not on fhore mvfelf. 


Was you ever on fhore there ? 


Was you ever on fhore at Antigua? 

At Montferrat ? 



[ 627 ] 

At Nevis ? e 


At Dominique ? 


At Saint Vincent’s ? 


How do you form your judgment of the heighth of the furf at 
Saint Chriftopher’s ? 

I have faid before, we were (landing off and on at Bafleterre; 

I faw a great furf as I thought, and the boats feemed to have fome 
difficulty in getting through it. 

Did you ever fee the furf on the Windward Coaft of Africa, as 
high as that in the road of Bafleterre, at Saint Chriftopher’s ? 

I think I have. 

What month in the year was it that you flood off the coaft at 
Bafleterre ? 

I do not recolle£t the exaCt time ? 

Did you ever fee a Slave flogged by his mailer, or bv any perfon 
by his direction, in any of the Britifh Iflands you have been in? 

I never law a Slave flogged ; but I faw one at Black River at Ja» 
maica, who had been feverely flogged. 

You have faid you did not enquire the caufe of that Slave having 
been fo much flogged; do or do you not believe, from the cir- 
cumftance of his being in the gaol there, that he mull have been 
punilhed by the authority of fome civil magiftrate for fome of¬ 
fence ? 

I cannot fay by whofe authority he was punilhed, as I did not 

Did not your humanity prompt you to enquire, becaule that 
fevere punilhment made fuch an impreffion on your mind ? 

Whatever my humanity might have prompted me to have done, 
I conceive it would have been giving no relief to the poor fellow. 

Queftion repeated. 

It dicVnot. 


t 6*8 ] 

Have you ever feen a foldier flogged at the halberts ? 

I never did; but I have feen a failor flogged. 

Hid you never hear of a foldier dying in confequence of the pu* 
nifhment he had received at the halberts ? 

I do not remember having heard any fuch thing. 

You have faid you fcarcely ever faw the back of a Slave, but it 
had fears on it; as far as your information and obfervation have 
gone, do you believe that Slaves are in general flogged on the 
back ? 

I believe they are; I have been informed fo. 

In what Ifland ? 

In Grenada. 

You have faid, that you think by the means of the trade of this 
country, that the manners and cuftoms of the Africans might be 
altered, and that you were going to try the experiment; explain the 
nature of the experiment you are going to try ? 

The Queftion being objected to ; 

The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And being again called in, 

* The Qneftion was repeated. 

I am certainly going (and it is my opinion it may be done) to 
induce the Africans to cultivate their country, and raife fuch arti¬ 
cles as will fell in this country, and pay them With our manu- 
1 failures. 

Are you a principal in this undertaking ? 

I do not precifely know my fltuation yet, for I do not believe 
the plan is yet entirely fettled. 

Is any of your own private fortune to be embarked in this under** 
taking ? 

I have no fortune. 

Are you to receive a falary, or any other remuneration for the 
forvices expected to be performed by you in this undertaking, and 
from whom ? 

I expert to be paid by my employers. 

[ 629 ] 

Arc your employers the committee for the abolition of the- 
Slave-Trade in London, or any of them ? 

Not the committee at large, I believe two or three of the fub- 
feribers are members of that committee. 

Which of the voyages did you allude to when you faid the 
{hips were fo crouded that the Slaves had not more room to lie on 
than a man in his coffin ? 

It was fo in ail. 

Did you tell the Privy Council that the ffiip was not much 
crouded in the fecond voyage, when you had the largefl: number 
of Slaves on board ? 

In mv fecond voyage the {hip was not fo much crouded as in 
the others, but I conceived them very thick then. 

Queftion repeated. 

I believe I did. 

After your evidence was taken by the Privy Council, was it read 
over to you ? 

I cannot fpeak pofitively whether it was or not. 

When therefore you told the Privy Council that the {hip was 
not much crouded in that voyage, what were your grounds for fo 
faying ? 

I had no other grounds than that we had not the fame num¬ 
ber of Slaves as we had the laft voyage. 

Do the Europeans ever go up the country to the places from 
whence the Slaves are brought ? 

I never heard that they did. 

Do they acquire their knowledge of the manner in which 
Slaves are made fo, any other ways than by the information of 
the Negroes themfelves, whether traders or others, and by the 
conclufions which they draw on the comparifon of thofe diffe¬ 
rent informations ? 

I believe all their information is derived from the Black traders 
and the purchafed Negroes. 

If then the practice of firing villages for the purpofe of making 
Slaves were ever fo frequent, would it be in the power of Euro- 

8 B peans 

[ 63 ° ] 

peans to ftate it as a fadt of their own knowledge and obfer- 

It would not be in then power to defcribe one of thofe fcene% 
as I believe very few White men, if any, have feen them. 

Have you every reafon to believe, from the concurrent teftimony 
of others, that fuch a practice does exift ? 

I do really believe that that is one of their modes of making 

war, as they call it. 

Does not the king of Bonny know his town to lie at the mercy 
of the French and Englifli ? 

I fhould fuppofe he is fenfible it does. 

If a gun were fired for the purpofe of forcing trade, do you 
imagine that that defign would be underftood by the king ? 

I do imagine if the Europeans were to threaten fuch a thing, it 
would induce him to fend fome of his canoes to what they call the 
Up Country. 

Have you ever experienced the heat to be fo great, and the air 
fo foul, in the Negroes apartments between decks, as to induce you 
to think that fuffbeation might not improbably be occafioned by a 
night’s confinement in fuch an atmofphere ? 

In the Alexander, as I have related before, being down but a fhort 
time, the heat and flench were fo intolerable, that I am perfuaded 
a night’s confinement in that fituation would have deftroyed me. 

Did you keep any memorandum refpedting the quantity of rice 
bought in the voyage of 1783 ? 

I did not. 

Can you fay whether there was Any difficulty in procuring the 
quantity you did take ? 

There was no difficulty apparently. 

When you ftated that between thirty and forty Slaves died in 
that voyage on the Middle Paflage, did or did you not mean to 
include thofe who died on fhore- before the fale ? 

We had none on fhore in that voyage before they were fold ; if 
I have ftated the number wrong, it is merely from not having any 
papers of journal relating to that voyage. 

You have been afked whether you were ever on fhore at St. Chrif- 


E 6 3* ] 

topher’s, Antigua, Montferrat, Nevis, Dominique, and St. Vin¬ 
cent’s, to which you replied no; have you ever faid you were 
there ? 

I believe I have not faid that I was on (hore at thofe Iflands. 

You have mentioned, in the courfe of your evidence, that the 
feamen in general on board the Alexander were ill ufed ; do you 
know any other inftances of remarkable barbarity or ill treatment 
in that fliip, bcfides thofe which you have dated to the Com¬ 
mittee ? 

I have faid that all the people in that (hip, except three, were 
beaten or ill treated. I remember the black cook one day broke 
a plate; he had a fifh-gig darted at him, which would certainly 
have dedroyed him, if he had not (looped or dropped down. One 
day the carpenter’s mate had let his pitch-pot catch fire; he and 
the cook were both tied up, dripped, and flogged, but the cook 
with the greated feverity; after that the cook had fait water and 
Cayenne pepper rubbed on his back. A man came on board at 
Bonny, belonging to a little fhip (1 believe the captain’s name was 
Dodfon, of Liverpool) which had been overfet at New Calabar; 
this man, when he came on board, was in a convalefcent date; he 
was feverely beaten one night, for what caufe I know not; he came 
and applied to me for fomething to rub his back with ; I was told 
by the captain not to give him any thing, and he was defired to go 
iorward ; he went and Ly under the forecadle : I vifited him very 
often, when he complained of his bruifes; he had a return of his 
flux, and died in about three weeks from the time he was beaten ; 
the lad words he ever (poke to me were (after (hedding tears) “ [ 
“ cannot punifh him (meaning the captain") but God will.” Thefe 
are the mod remarkable indances which I know; but every body 
was beaten in their turn, as I have fo often laid before. 

Did Mr. Frafer fet down all the rice which he purchafed on the 
Coad ? 

All that he bought at Junk I believe he did fet down ; .but I was 
employed to purchafe rice at the different places we were at in that 
voyage on the Grain Coad, of which, 1 believe, no account was 

You have faid, in a former anfwer, that you could not be ac¬ 
curate in this rice bufinefs, and that it was matter of opinion 
and conjecture; aid you mean to refer this pofiible inaccuracy 
to all that pafled relative to the rice, or only to the exaCt quan¬ 
tity which had been purchafed ? 

Certainly, to all of it. 



[ 6 3 2 3 

Do you know Mr. Athorn, in Mr. M*Taggert*s compting- 
houfe at Briftol ? 

I know a perfbn of that name, who ufed to be in his compt- 

Did you or did you not defire Mr. Athorn to intercede with 
Mr. M‘Taggert to give you the command of an African Slave 
fhip ? 

I never did, or ever thought of fuch a thing} for if I had 
been defirous of getting promotion in the African fervice, Mr. 
Frafer could have done it much better than Mr. Athorn. I dined 
one day with Captain Frafer and his officers; he then faid, “ Every 
one of you who are here I will make captains.”—He has been as 
good as his word ; and I am the only one out of that number that 
has not commanded a veffcl in the Slave Trade. 

Do you or do you not know that the boiling over of the pitch- 
pot is attended with the greateft danger to the fhip, and all on 
board ? 

I know it is attended with danger ; but it was the fault of the 
carpenter’s mate, and I do not think the cock had any right to be 
punifficd for it. 

Are vour expences of coming up to London to give evidence 
before this Committee defrayed by yourfelf, or by any other per- 
fon, and by whom ? 

I came up to London on a very different bufinefs, with an in¬ 
tention of going to Africa. I was delired by the committee for 
the abolition of the Slave Trade to attend here ; and whether they 
choofe to give me any thing or not, is at their own option. 

Do you expert any thing from them ? 

I do expedt, as I have attended their bufinefs, to have my ex¬ 
pences paid. 

And then the Witnefs was diredted to withdraw. 


C 633 ] 

Veneris , 12® die Martii 1790. 

(>Aptain Ambrofe Lace attending according to order, was called 
in, and examined. 

Was you ever employed in the African Trade? 

Was you at Old Calabar in the year 1767, as captain of any, and 
of what (hip ? 

1 was th. re as captain in the (hip Edgar. 

What number of Englifh (hips were then lying at Calabar ? 


Were they all (hips concerned in the African Trade? 

Every one. 

Do you remember, that in order to make an end of a difpute 
which had for fome time fubfifted between the inhabitants of the 
Old and New Town, any agreement was made for both parties to 
meet on (hip-board ? 


Can you defcribe the nature of that difpute ? 

There had been for many years a difpute between the people of 
Old Town and New Town. 


State the nature and circumftances of that difpute. 

When I firft went there in 1748, there were no inhabitants in 
the place called Old Town, they all lived at the place called 
New Town ; fome time after, difputes arofe between a party who 
now call themfelves Old Town people, and thofe who are now 
called New Town people. 

When the parties were invited to meet on (hip-board, was that 
invitation made with an infidi us view, to get them within the power 
of the Englifh, to make Slaves of them ? 


Did any of the parties meet on board in confequence of fuch agree¬ 
ment j and what paffed on that occafion ? 

8 C 

Captain LACE, 


[ 634 ] 

The principal people from Old Town came on board my fmp» 
where the duke (the principal man of Old Town) was to have met 
them * they came on board about half paft (even in the morning; at 
ah ut’eight I was going to breakfaft with a perfon who called hnn- 
felf king of Old Town ; there were four of the king’s large canoes 
alongfideof my (hip, where the other canoes were I cannot tell: 

I was juft pouring out fome coffee, when I heard a firing; the 
king called out and faid, Imo, a brother of h.s, was firing. I went 
upon d< ck along with the king, and my people told me my gunner 
was killed : immediately the king was for going overboard; I then 
told him to ftay where he was; he told me he would not, he 
would go in his canoe, which he did; his fon who was with him 
in mv fliip he left behind, but called to him m his own language 
to ftav with me, which he did; the firing, by what I.can recoi¬ 
led might be for ten or fifteen minutes, but I cannot be certain 
as to the exad time. The canoes were mod of them then got 
aftern of my (hip within about 300 or 400 yards; I had not time 
to make obfervations of the two parties, I wanted to defend my- 
felf after I was fired into; I was no further molefted, the canoes 

were all gone. 

At the time the firing commenced, were any of your guns load¬ 
ed or were any of the fmall-arms in the poffefiion of your crew ? 

The fmall-arms are always loaden, but they were locked up, and 
thecheft was broke open. 

Was the key of the cheft afterwards found, and where ? 

In the gunner’s pocket. 

Did youor your people take any (hare in the affray that then 

happened ? . . ,. 

No more than any gentleman in this room. 

Were any guns fired from your (hip, great or fmall, upon that 
occafion ? 

No; not fo much as a piftol. 

Were any guns fired from any other (hips upon that occafion f 
Not to my knowledge. 

Did the king lull any man on board your (hip ? 


Was the king on board any other (hip during that buftle ? 

[ 6 SS ] 

Not to my knowledge ; if he was, it muft have been before he 
came on board my fhip. 

Were there any Slaves adtually made on that occafion ? 

Not to my knowledge. 

At what time, and how long after, did you get the complement 
of Slaves for your fhip? 

I went there the beginning of July, I cannot exadtly ftate when 
this happened, and failed the firft week in December ; I was there 
Within a few days of five months, over or under. 

Did the Englifh enter into this bufinefs with any fraudulent or im¬ 
proper view ? 

JN ot that ever I heard of. 

Did the Englifh, as you know or believe, reap any benefit what¬ 
ever from this tranfadtion ? 

No; it was againft the trade. 

Previous to this tranfadfion, had there been any confultation 
amongfl the Englifh captains, relative to the difference between the 
Old and New Towns, or relative to any other matter connedted with 
this tranfadlion ? 

If there was, it was before I came into the river, and unknown to 

Do you know what a bafket of rice on the Windward Coaft of 
Africa generally weighs ? 

I never flopt to the Windward but twice; by what I recoiled!:, 
fome of the bafkets will hold from two to three gallons. 

Do you recolledt what a crew of rice weighs ? 

I do not in weight. 

Do you in meafure ? 

They differ in different parts of the Coafl, but they are in ge¬ 
neral from two to three gallons; the largeft I ever faw was three 

What was the largeft fized bafket you ever faw on the Coaft ? 

To the beft of my recolledtion, it hardly filled one of thefe three 
gallon crews. 


[ 636 ] 

Did you ever meet with the Reverend Mr. Clarkfon, at Liver¬ 
pool ? 

I breakfafted with him. 

Had you any converfation with him on African fubjedls ? 

He alked me fome queftions concerning the produce of Africa. 


Do you know Mr. Rathbone of Liverpool ? 

He breakfafted with us at the fame time. 

Was this tranfaction at Old Calabar mentioned at that time? 

It was. 

Can you recoiled!: what pafted about it ? 

I may not recolledt every word. It was firft mentioned by Mr. 
Chaffers, whom we breakfafted with; Mr. Chaffers afked me if I 
could tell what number of Black perfons might be killed that day; 
I told him I could not; I alfo told him my fhip was fired into, my 
gunner killed, and I believe I added, that I did not know whether 
they did not mean to facrifice me; this is the principal part of the 
converfation which I recolledl to have paffed. 

Do you recolledt faying any thing with refpeft to any advice 
which you gave to any of the other captains relative to this fubjedl? 

Do you recolledt whether you did or did not give any advice what- 
foeverto any of the captains at the time? 

I did not. 

Did you know by whom your gunner was killed ? 

It was impofiible for me to know; it muft have been from fome 
of the canoes at a diftance, but from which I cannot tell; but I am 
of opinion the firing muft have come from the New Town people. 

Why do you think the firing came from the New Town people? 

The Old Town people were alongfide my fhip, and the New 
Town people were at a diftance from them. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


[ 6 37 ] 

SALES of 306 Slaves, per the Ship Emilia, Captain James Frafer, on Account of 
the Owners, Evan Bailie, Efquire, and Co. Merchants, Briftol. 

| Privilege Men. 




















| Women, 







February 5. 

Job Bennet 



66 & 62, Duty 40/ 



Jofeph Clemfton 









66, 64, and Duty 



John Barton - . - 












Doft. M‘Ewen 











James Cuningham 












George G. Brown 











■ ■'■■■■ 

Thomas Cockburn 













John Murray 









Girl 58 




Robert Currie 









- • 



James Campbell - 













William Jeffries - 












1 " ‘ 

Robert Hepburn - 








Girl 58 




Charles Grant 









to v ^ 




John M'Crae - - 








_ to — 




Daniel M‘Intolh • 












John Sanderfon 










62 6 



John Joyce 












Edward Campbell 









v to to 


James Davidfon 









- * 

> 3 ° 


John Jacks 












John M‘Pherfon 











Andrew Linton 












James Anderfon 









- - - 




Alexander Allan 












James Duthie 












John Hinds - 









Girls 58 




Thomas Jackfon - 









Boys 58 




Richard Davis 












William J. Parfons 









Girl 58 




Captain Orrack 





^ 4 

► ^ 





John Grant 












Angus Campbell - 








Girl 58 




Erfkin Stobo - - 













Dr. Fletcher - 
















l 2 













8 D J ames 

1 7 >° 3 °- 

Captain James Frafer*s privilege, 2 per C l - 

John Gould, his privilege 2 Slaves, on an Average with 
the Cargo, deducting Sale and Import Duty - 
Alexander Falconbridge 1 ditto - 

Benjamin Howard « 1 ditto - 

Robert Mills - - - 1 ditto - 

Adventure allowed by the Owners to the Officers, 5 Ne¬ 
groes on the above Average - 

340 12 

108 6 if 

54 3 —1 
54 3 —1 

270 15 

882 2 7f 

Evan Bail lie, Efquire, and Co. In Account Current with Allans and Campbell. 

[ *39 1 





*- i 

On tJ- ^ 

vo un 

£ * 
On t}* 

oo vo 




i j 

■ * 



m f-f 

- e 



























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03 tj 
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to ~ 


^ CO 


CJ ^ « 

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e s « i « r > 

3 W ■ 




o 3 

— . < 

'S? c 

.5 ^ *-< 

.o & 

SS * £ S 3 
o> *= ir 00 •= co 

cm oo J: w _ _ 

vO 3 -O O 

‘S’frg d^J 

- u - ^ 

w u. c ti .5P.S 

•P'“ S w 

' < 5 1 ' 




3 -C ^ ^ O C 3 £ u = 

S -S' to W dTTo £ ~ o ^.cj-^r,co,a 

£WcojrHc£j=;s}2;ji&rJ3 x 5 

h H 

_ ^ 
c *~* tsz * 

C c 3 - u i 

c r co f c 


8 E 




Privilege Men 
Ditto Men Boys 

Men Boys 
Women Girls 

66 and Duty. 
64 Ditto. 
_ Ditto. 




54 a. 58 


taken before the 

appointed for the 



Reported i ft April 1790. 

Witnefies Examined, 

Captain HALL, 


Captain LACE. 

[ } ] 



Martha 4 0 die Mail 1790. 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed to take 
the Examination of Witnefles on the Slave Trade. 

Lunce^ 26° die Aprilis 1790. 

(^APTAIN THOMAS WILSON, of the Royal Navy, 

called in, and examined. 

Were vou ever in Africa ? 


In what part, for what continuance, at what time, and on what 
fervice ? 

From Cape Blanco to the River Gambia; I was there between ' 
five and fix months, in part of the years 17S3 and 1784; I 
then commanded His Majefly’s fhip Racehorfe: I was fent out 
with ftore-fhips and tranfports to embark the troops and {lores 
from the Ifland of Goree. I remained with the fhip myfelf, to 
deliver up the Ifland and garrifon to any officer his Moft Chriftian 
Majefly ffiould fend out to repoflefs it. 


[ 4"] 

Where did you chiefly refide during your flay on the coaft? 
My chief refidence was at the Ifland of Goree. 

. D “ nn g your flay in Africa, had you any opportunity of learn¬ 
ing how Slaves were generally procured for the Slave Trade ? 

1 had; principally by their inteftine wars, by their king’s break- 

ing up towns and villages, by crimes or imputed crimes and bv 
kidnapping. J 

Un what grounds did you form this opinion, ano wnence did 
you derive your information on thefe heads? 

Great part of it was from hearfay; chiefly from the inhabitants 
ot Goree; many of whom were refpeflable and intelligent peo¬ 
ple, fpoke the French, Englifli, Mandingo, and other Negro hn- 

Did they fpeak of the Slave Trade's being fupplied from thefe 
fources as a matter of notoriety? 

Yes, as a matter of notoriety. 

In the accounts they gave you, did they differ from each 
other, or from themfelves at different times ? 

N °; I always found them confident in’their account; I have 
convened with them frequently and feparately on the fob/eft 

tha7ifaIv U h r J nt - rC0Urre "cm ""i” f ° fre< l uent and familiar, 

that ifany had given you falfe relations they would have bee, 
contradifted by the others ? 7 beeu 

They were frequently at my table, and had they given falfe 

topic. 0 " 81 ft ° Uld eafi ' y have dircovered !t > aa it was our general 

of vlflagesi the Coram!t,ee ,0 under ftand by the breaking up 

before 6 day-fight f “' T0Undin S village with his troops 

oeiore day-light, and feizing as many of the inhabitant \a 

fmt Ins purpofe; and I underftood this praflice wa m ^ 

When they were not a, war with any ne^bouring naTom ^ 

tlie H cafc f°" t0 Mie T e that frce P erfons are ever fold in 

whom they jfco^eSf &r ^ *7 

I do 

[ 5 J 

I do firmly believe it; it was a matter univerfally acknow¬ 

Did any circumftance fall within your own perfoual know¬ 
ledge in confirmation of this opinion? 

There did; within a week after my landing on the Ifland 
of Goree, the Icing of Darnel fent down a free man for fale by 
two of his guards—it had been the cuftom to bring every thing 
for fale firft to the government houfe. I fent word to the king, 
that as there were no Britifh traders on the Ifland, I fhould not 
fuffer the French to purchafe any, requefting him not to trouble 
himfelf to fend any more Slaves till he heard of my departure. 

How did you know that the king was to have the price 
for which this man was to be fold ? 

I was told fo by the guards, to whom I put feveral quef- 

Did you afk the guards, whether the man was guilty of the 
crime for which he was to be fold? 

I did; one of them replied with great flirewdiiefs, he did not 
conceive that was ever enquired into or of any confequence. 

What do yon apprehend would be the fate of the man whom 
you thus refufed to purchafe? 

I heard with great pleafure afterwards from my interpreter, that 
it was his opinion he would regain his freedom, when the king 
found no ready market to gratify his avarice or his refentment; 
and I am perfuaded that was the fa£t, as I heard no more from the 
king during feveral months I continued to command the Ifland, 
and for fix weeks afterwards, when the Marquis Delajale had re- 
poflefled it; for 1 particularly enquired. 

Was this the market to which the king had been ufed to fend 
4 »s Slaves ? 

I underftood it was his ufual market. 

How then can you account for there being -only one inftance of 
this fort during your ftay; this which you have mentioned having 
occurred within a week after your arrival ? 

Very eafily; as my meflfage to the king had put a total flop to 
the market. 



[ 6 ] 

Was it Toon after the time of Captain Hill’s being at Goree that 
you were there ? 

I underltood his was the laft king’s fhip. 

Then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And being again called in, he was afked; 

During your ftay at Goree, did you ever fee people go out in 
the evening in war drefles to obtain Slaves from the neighbouring 
villages ? 

I never faw any thing of the kind. 

If this practice had prevailed at a period preceding that at which 
you were on the Coaft, might it not have been expedted to pre¬ 
vail alio during your ftay ? 

I think not, as I had cut off the motive to convidt or kidnap, by 
putting a flop to the trade. 

Do you believe kidnapping to be generally prevalent on this 
part of the Coaft ? 

I have no doubt of it—it was acknowledged by all denomina¬ 
tions of people I converfed with on the fubjedt; it is the lirft 
principle of the natives; they never go unarmed when a Slave 
veiTel is on the Coaft; when I have met them thus accoutred, 
I have, by my interpreter, enquired the realon, and they have 
pointed towards Portudal, where a French vefiel lay, then taking 
in Slaves, and in their own language informed me, their fears 
arol'e from that quarter—in addition to this, one circumftance 
came under my own immediate knowledge, which I will relate as 
briefly as poflible:—My predeceffor, Captain Lacy, having fent a 
courier to the River Gambia by land with difpatches, as he was 
returning he was kidnapped, and carried down to this vefiel by 
the natives, and there fold as a Slave, and had both legs put in 
irons, although he was a Freeman—a Moor—a Mufiulman—a 
native of Senegal—fpoke the French language fluently, and had 
diipatches in his pocket to a Britifh governor, and on his Bri¬ 
tannic Majefty’s fervice. He contrived in this confinement to 
write a letter, which fell into my hands, defcribing his milerable 
fituation—I immediately fent another courier with a letter to the 
mafter of the vefiel, whofe name was Rouchan, demanding him 
as a perfon employed in his Britannic Majefty’s fervice —this 
6 courier 

[ 7 ] 

courier knew both the matter of the vettel and the former courier. 
—The matter of the vettel refufed to deliver him up, or let my 
I meflenger fee him, contenting himfelf with lending me a verbal 

anfvver, that it was true he had bought a Slave fomevvhat anfwer- 
ing the defeription I had given; but he knew not, and did not 
believe him to be a free man, nor of his having difpatches ; that 
it would not be doing juftice to his owners to give him up, and 
that if any body was to blame in the tranfii&ion, thofe might 
anfwer it who fold him.—A few days afterwards he thought pro¬ 
per to write me a letter much in the fame ftyle.—This treatment 
fo provoked me, that I determined to fail, and to feize him by force, 
and it was my firm intention to have given the mate the charge of 
the vettel, and fent Rouchan a prifoner to Senegal for daring to in¬ 
fringe the laws of nations, and infult the Britilh government even 
in the perfon of a meflenger; but he foon faved me the trouble of 
putting the fcheme in execution that I had formed; for having 
been before at the Bland where I commanded, he had left (lores and 
articles for trade, which he now recolledted he fhould want; and 
wilhing to remove his vettel to another part of the Coaft, he fent his 
mate and fix men in his long boat to fetch them—Thefe, on their 
arrival, I immediately confined in prifon ; fhortlv after fending 
an officer to acquaint him with the reafon of their ltarfh treat¬ 
ment, and my determination to keep them until the courier was 
delivered up in lafety with his difpatches.—Although the mate 
owned he had foretold what might juftly have been expected, he 
requefted I would releafe him from fo rigid a confinement, at leaft 
allow him a courier to fend to the (hip, with pen and ink.—I an- 
fwered only the latter part of the requeft, telling him he would 
do right to (late to his commander the exa£t lituation in which 
he found himfelf, and inform him that I had l'eized on the (lores. 
—The boat was permitted to depart the fame day, and the mate 
releafed upon his parole, as his rigid confinement was defigned 
only to ad: (by the crew’s defeription) on his commander—four 
days after this the mate received an anfwer; Rouchan (till perfift- 
ing to keep the man; and informing the mate, that as I lhould 
be foon tired of maintaining him, and could not juftify detaining 
him at all, he advifed him to bear his confinement as chear- 
fully as he could.—The mate brought me the letter, with execra¬ 
tions againft the unfeeling tyrant, under whom he had the mil- 
fortune to ferve, frankly acknowledged it was the courier they 
had on board.—He had converfed with him, feen his difpatches, 
and had informed his commander of the circumftance, who refufed 
to fee him himfelf, and on that pretence argued that he did not 
know the fa£t.—Near a fortnight from this date, finding my perfe- 


verance at lead equal to his own obflinacy, lie at length fent me 
the man, but'in fuch a condition as would have forced companion 
from a Savage. In an open canoe, or rather coble, not much more 
than two feet wide, paddled by two black men whom he had 
hired for the purpofe, lay this poor emaciated wretch, who had 
been near thirty-lix hours on the water without food, and both 
legs in irons, in which date he had been hoifted over the veflel’s 
fide, Rouchan declaring, as he was his property and Slave, he 
fhould wear the marks of it until he reached Goree; thefe he 
had worn near a month, inlomuch that the iron, by the fwelling 
of his legs, had eaten into the flefh. and after he was liberated 
from them, he was obliged to be lupported up to the government 
houfe between the fhoulders of two men. I will only add, it 
was near a month before he could return to Senegal, which he 
did in the mod; grateful manner I ever faw. I dated to the go¬ 
vernor of Senegal the exadt manner in which I had adted by this 
African, and how I would have adied, had I caught his European 
countryman, recommending the bearer, Barboudn, to his pro- 
tedlion, and for redrefs of his wrongs, if Rouchan fhould touch 
at Senegal; and I had fhortly after a letter from Monfieur de 
Montele, the governor, approving my whole condudt, and pro- 
mifing every redrefs in his power. 

Did you ever hear of Slaves being bred for fale in Africa ? 

I never did. 

Did you ever hear of its being the cudom in Africa to eat 
human flefh ? 

I never did ; and I am morally certain no fuch pradtice exided 
on that part of the coaft where I was; nor did I ever hear of it 
in any other. 

"What was the nature of the government of that part of the 
coad of Africa which borders on Goree ? 

I faw none of the kings, but was informed it was abfolute ; 
hut, more or lefs fo, according to the internal drength of the 
different princes. 

Are there any traces of a regular government ? 

Alcaides and petty magidrates are didributed in every village, 
to colled! the dues for their kings, and they feem very regular 
and exadl in colledling and demanding them. 

[ 9 ] 

Are any dues or payments required from perfons who trade or 
touch on tiie Coaft ? 

I doubt not there are ; I can only anfwer for His Majefty’s fhip 
I commanded ; we paid regularly for every boat-load of water or 

What is your opinion of the capacity of the natives of that 
country ? have they any manufadures, &c. ? 

I have every reafon to believe their capacities are by no means 
inferior to our own ; their manufactures are various, chiefly for 
their own confumption j cotton cloths, which they make under 
every difadvantage, and want of carding utenfils, fpinning wheels 
or looms, are beautifully fine, and would not difgrace a Britifh 
warehoule they are alfo curious in their ornamental works of 
their own native gold, fuch as ear-rings, bracelets at the arms and 
ancles—alfo in their iron works for weapons of defence or agri¬ 
culture i and their experience makes them give a preference to 
their own works, which they can depend on, rather than truft to 
a knife or hatchet made for fhow——on this account unmanufac¬ 
tured iron in bars is the deareft bar on that part of the Coaft; they 
are likewife very careful in the feledion and in the rejection of 

What do you mean by a knife or hatchet made for fhow ? 

I mean made of bad materials. 

Do you mean that they are made with the profefled intention of 
being articles of fhow, or only that they are made of fuch bad 
materials as to be unfit for fervice ? 

I do not mean certainly that they are made only for fhow j but 
many of them are unfit for the purpofes defigned, which they can 
find out as foon as we can. 

Will you explain your meaning in faying that an unmanufac¬ 
tured iron bar is the deareft bar on the Coaft ? 

I mean a fjpecific quantity of iron in bar, about the value of a 
dollar, a bar or dollar being fynonimous terms. 

Queftion repeated. 

I mean that, they would rather make thofe weapons which they 
can conftrud, either for defence ' ‘ 

fer them. 

or agriculture j they always pre- 
C Is 

[ 10 ] 

Is not the value of things on that part of the coaft reckoned by 
bars ? 

It is. 

Have they any manufactures of cane or leather ? 


Whence was the Ifland of Goree, and the Britifh fhips there, 
fupplied with frefh provifions during your flay ? 

Entirely from the Continent; we were well fupplied with every 
thing they could raife, produce, or with fafety catch, whether of 
beef, pork, fifh, fowls, partridges, venifon, palm wine, See. 

Did you perceive in the inhabitants of Africa any remarkable 
indifpofition to labour or to commerce ? 

None j they fupplied their own wants and ours; more would 
have been fuperfluous, and would perifh. 

What judgment did you form of the temper and difpofition of 
the Africans ? 

I have reafon to fpeak of them with great regard j they ever 
treated me in the raoft hofpitable manner ; I have been many miles 
up their country with them unprotected, and they feemed to vie 
with each other who fhould fhew me moft attention, bring the 
choiceft fruits or the cooleft and frefheft palm-wine ; and when 
I finally left them, numbers of them fhed tears. I fhould not 
have mentioned this circumftance, but that I have lately read and 
heard much of their unfeeling difpofition ; from my own know¬ 
ledge and experience I do afiert they are open to and fufceptible 
of the fineft feelings of human nature—to all the noble impulfes 
of gratitude and affeCtion. 

Is it your judgment, from what you have feen and obferved, that 
the continuance of the Slave Trade in Africa operates to prevent 
the exploring of that country, and to obftruCt the progrefs of civi¬ 
lization and commerce ? 

It is impoflible the natives fhould explore it with any degree of 
fafety in the miferable fituation in which they at prefent are ; in 
continual fears of open enemies, pretended friends, or vindidive 
neighbours, they will not for a temporary gratification or con¬ 
venience rifque the being carried into perpetual flavery. It would 
be much eafier explored by an European than by an African, who 
would be liable to be kidnapped and carried into flavery j but no 
Havers will buy a White man. 



[ I* 3 

Has the ftate of the Slave fliips ever fallen within your obfer- 
vation ? 

Several of them anchored in Goree Bay during the time of my 
refidence there, both in their going to and returning from the 
River Gambia. 

What judgment did you form of them ? 

I did not board any of them. 

Did you know any thing of the ftate of thofe fhips, whether it 
was cleanly, comfortable, or otherwife ? 

I fiiould imagine they were neither very clean, nor very com¬ 
fortable ; two of them had anchored immediately to windward of 
the Raceliorle—I was then landed in the garrifon—my officers* 
and even crew, complained of the noxious fmell continually on the 
fhip, infomuch that they dreaded fome infection—I went on board, 
and found the complaint fo juft, that I ordered them to anchor to 
leeward of the Racehorfe, which they did—I alfo gave orders that 
in future any fhips of this defcription Handing into the Bay 
fhould be directed to anchor in the like manner, and if there was 
occafion for the boats of either fhip to come along-fide, the crews 
fhould not be permitted on any pretence to quit their boats—and 
this I judged, for the fafety of my people, a neceflary precau¬ 

Do you recollect of what nation thefe fhips were ? 

I cannot fpeak politively—but I am inclined to think they were 

Were you ever actually on board a Slave fhip ? 

As my duty led me, when I was a midfhipman, I have boarded 

What judgment did you then form of them, as to the particu¬ 
lars before referred to ? 

The ftench to me, and I believe to every European unaccus¬ 
tomed to them, is intolerably offenfive. 

From your experience, are the African fhips a ufeful Source of 
ftipply of feamen to His Majefty’s navy ? 

My experience does not fumifh me with any reafon to think 
fo—I believe the contrary. 

v - 

Have you ever refufed to take feamen from on board Guinea 
fhips, when fhort of your complement of men ? 

I certainly 

[ M 3 

I certainly have—feven men who were wrecked in a Guinea- 
man, near Fort James in the river Gambia, applied to me on 
my arrival at Goree, and offered themfelves for the Racehorle—as 
Britifh fubjefts, it was my duty to provide for them, which I did, 
by providing them accommodations on fhore, allowing them ra¬ 
tions, and fending them to their native country in the tranfports ; 
I have likevvife refufed feveral (while on that coaft, and when I 
■was fhort of complement) who had or would have deferted their 
employ; but, befides their cadaverous looks, they were the moft 
filthy vagabonds 1 ever faw, and I could not think of infulting 
my crew by giving them fuch companions—cleanlinefs being the 
firft prefervative of health to feamen ; and purfuing inflexibly 
this plan, I did not lofe one man during my ftay on that coaft, 
nor indeed the whole time I commanded the fliip, upwards of 
four years, except one man who died of an apoplexy at Ply¬ 
mouth (with a complement of one hundred men, and never five 
fhort of it)—and this I think I could not have faid, had I re¬ 
cruited my fhip from the polluted and peftilential air of a 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mart is 2 7° die Aprilis 1790. 

CAptain THOMAS WILSON called in, and further examined. 

Did any inftance of kidnapping fall within your knowledge, 
during your ftay at Goree, befides what you have already men¬ 
tioned ? 

In a judicial cafe there did, which tended to fix that crime 
upon a former governor; it had, I found, been the cuftom for 
the commanding officers, both by fea and land, where there 
were no magiftrates, to take depolitions on oath ; a court of this 
kind, before the Britifh left the Ifland in 1783, was loudly 
called for, and at which, with Captain Lacy, then commandant, 
I affifted ; feveral matters irrelevant to this bufinefs were pro¬ 
duced ; among the reft a refpe£table maraboo, or prieft, from the 
continent attended, whofe brother (another maraboo) had been 


[ *3 1 

kidnapped, and he fwore to the following effect That the go¬ 
vernor alluded to, having taken fome diflike to his brother, lent 
a party over to the continent to lay in wait for him, and, although 
he had fome fufpicion of them, deceived by their fpecious beha¬ 
viour, he was perfuaded to drink, and in this very aft, held facred 
by the tenets of their religion, they clafped their arms round 
him, and conveyed him to a Slave fhip then in Goree Bay ; that 
this maraboo immediately waited on the governor, offering two 
or more Slaves for his brother’s redemption, which was rejected 
with fcorn, as he declared no confideration Ihould redeem him, 
and that his brother went into flavery: the energy and agitation 
with which he took the oath, in the form prefcribed by his re¬ 
ligion, convinced me it was a fadt ; and this was a matter of 
public notoriety to the officers, garrifon, and inhabitants of 

You have fpoken of many refpedtable and intelligent inhabi¬ 
tants of Goree, from whom you derived information refpe&ing 
the modes of obtaining Slaves ; were any of thefe perfons engaged 
in any way of life, which rendered them peculiarly competent to 
give intelligence on this fubjedl ? 

I conceive all of them were; one of them, with whom I 
particularly converfed, was a furgeon by profeffion, had been in 
London, and in Paris ; he, with another, had been appointed by 
a former governor to a& as a magiftrate on the Ifland; but I 
conceive their competency to anfwer thefe queftions arofe chiefly 
from their being themfelves Slave traders; they collected them for 
the Weft India Ihips, and often took trips to the river Gambia for 
that purpole. 

Did ever any circumftances fall within your notice which led 
you to believe the natives of Africa were afraid of being carried off 
by the Slave Ships ? 

Great part of their behaviour led me to think fo. On the ar¬ 
rival of any King’s fhip in Goree Bay, or any other part of the 
coaft I was on, the natives immediately came on board, and would 
frequently ftay all night if permitted ; but I never faw a canoe go 
on board the Slave fhips; and I conclude they had fome reafon for 
their confidence in one and fufpicion of the other. 

Did they, whilft on board a King’s fhip, go up and down the 
fhip in an unembarrafled manner, or on the contrary ftand as near 
the gangway as they could, ready to efcape immediately into their 

own canoes if they might \Vifh to do fo ? 

D They 

[ *4 ] 

They appeared to be dlvefted of all apprehenfions whatfoever, 
and travcrfed the fliip with as much eafe and confidence as if they 
had been on fhore. 

Have any of the natives of Africa Slaves of their own ? 


How are thefe generally treated ? 

It is not an eafy matter to diftinguifti them from their matters or 
miftrefles ; they live all together. 

Do feamen in the Slave Trade appear as much attached to their 
fhips as in other trades ? 

I fhould imagine not, by the frequent applications I received to 
take them into His Majefty’s fervice. 

Have you ever been in the Weft Indies ? 

I have ; in moft of the Weft India Iflands. 

At what periods ? 

I was there in 1762, and in 1781 and 1782. 

What did you remark in general concerning the appearance of 
the Negro Slaves? 

The new-imported ones appeared very different from thofe I 
favv in Africa—they appeared dejected. 

Will you explain what you mean by the term new-imported? 

I mean thofe who had not been long enough upon the Iflands 
to be in fome meafure reconciled to their fate; who probably 
had loft their own language, and had got very few words in any 

Did you obferve in general any diftination between the Town 
and Country Negroes ? 

In general the Town Negroes looked the beft, moft lively, and 
■cheerful; were better cloathed, and many of them (the domeftic 
Slaves) fat, fleek, and faucy. 

Was the appearance of the Country Negroes in general mate¬ 
rially different ? 

They appeared in general more dejected, were worfe cloathed, 
and bore the ftronger marks of Slavery. 



I l s j 

Were the generality of Negro Slaves marked with the lafli ? 
marked^ CCrtain 7 feen a S reat proportion of them indelibl) 

* y ° U u frequentl y ^ ee Slaves whom, from any appearances von 
judged to be runaways ? 7 } 5 ™ 

I have feen them with clogs on their ancles, and with irons 
whtch they call pothooks, round their necks, and I have under- 
ftood thefe were of that defcription. 

Do you believe that Negro Slaves, after they have become unfit 
for labour, are ever turned off to fubfift by charity ? 

„ I ha r, e fe ^ n . the m in that fituation—it is termed, “ giving them 

r/rffid and P ermiffion t0 be g or ftarve-plfced by the 

road fide, unable to move, the moft abjeft outcafts of fociety • I 

have . ^em, converfed with them, relieved them, and made 
K be Iftir 5 and have to be! 

From what you faw and heard in the Weft Indies, did you con- 
clude there was any diftindion between the condition of the Slaves 
n the eftates of refident, and of abfentee proprietors ? 
thJr^ S S enerall y nnderftood, where planters refided themfelves, 
overte WCre tt£r ^ ° f than Under the dir ^ion of 

. Had you an 7 opportunity, whilft in the Weft Indies, of learn- 
ng Jhe general opinion as to its being more profitable to keep up 

cans1° Ck ° f S aVCS 57 breedmS ’ than t0 P u rchafe imported Afri- 

T i h3Vebeard from / e ' e ™ ] refipedable merchants in Kingfton 
of bSlg'.hem 71 ’’ refer ‘ mp0rtin E Slara > trouble 

No—I cannot fpeak any farther than I have done. 

Did the Negro Slaves in general appear to you to be in a more 
GreafBrkainT ^ ^ ^ ° rderS ° f P eo P le in 

amnn . contrar y> ^ never faw the leaft figns of happinefs 
among the imported Negroes, unlefs at their funerals, when they 
ling and commit every kind of extravagant joy, from a firm per- 


fuafion tliat thus efcaped from flavery, their deceafed friend is re¬ 
turning to his native country; in Africa their funerals are attended 
w ith the raoft mournful cries and exclamations. 

Were you ever on the Continent of America ? 

Great part of my life. 

What judgment have you formed concerning the treatment of 
Slaves in America, compared with what it is in the Weft India 
Iflands ? 

I have always thought them better treated and cloathed—they 
appeared more domeftic and happy—marriages are more frequent 
among them—there are fewer imported in proportion. 

Did you obferve any of the Negroes who were branded with 
marks which did not appear to have been made in their own 
country ? 

I have feen fome branded with letters on their cheeks and on 
their breafts, which I conceived were not made in their own 
country ; but thefe are not common. 

Have you formed, as an impartial man, from the whole of your 
experience in Africa and the Weft Indies, any general opinion 
concerning the Slave Trade? 

I have indeed long fmce formed an opinion (which each fuc- 
ceeding day’s experience has juftified and confirmed) that it is 
a trade evidently founded on injuftice and treachery, manifeftly 
carried on by oppreffion and cruelty, and not unfrequently termi¬ 
nated in murder. 

Do you know for what crime the man was condemned that the 
guards of the king of Darnel brought to Goree ? 

I learnt from the guards, that he v'as accufed of fetting part of 
a corn field on fire belonging to the king. 

Did you fay, that you was informed by the interpreter, that the 
man would probably be releafed ? 

It was the interpreter’s opinion he would be fo. 

Did not you tell the Committee of Privy Council, that you 
never had heard any thing more of the man ? 

I did ; and I have told this Committee the fame. 

[ l 7 ] 

Is the kingdom of Darnel a well-governed kingdom ? 

I cannot lpeak pofitively to that fubjeCt: only from the re¬ 
gular collection of the dues for their King, by the petty magi- 

If the dues are not paid, in what manner is the collection 
enforced ? 

As we paid for every thing we received from the continent, I 
cannot fpeak of my own knowledge; but I have heard, they had 
feized the boats and men who have refufed paying it. 

Do you know any thing with relation to the kingdom of 
Darnel P 

Not farther than I have fpoken to already. 

Upon what grounds did you fay that kidnapping was the firft 
principle of the natives ? 

Upon the information of the natives themfelves, the principle of 

What rank did you bear in the navy in the year 1762 ? 

I was a midfhipman. 

Did you refide for any length of time on fhore in the Weft 
India Iflands in 1762 ? 

I never refided on fhore in the Weft India Iflands. 

Have you ever refided any time upon a fugar plantation, and 
obferved the conduCt and management of Slaves on thofe eftates ? 

I never refided upon any fugar plantation—The obfervations I 
made were wherever I have occafionally vifited. 

Did you ever lodge, and for how many nights, upon a fugar 
plantation ? 

I never lodged on any fugar plantation. 

What was your rank in the navy in the years 1781 and 
1782 ? 

I was then Firft Lieutenant of his Majefty’s fhip London, Admiral 

Did you often go cn fhore in the Weft Indies during thofe 
years ? 




[ i8 ] 

Had you then fufficient opportunities to form a judgment of the 

fituation of the Slaves ? 

I faw them frequently. ( 

Were you on different plantations during that period ? 

I was on feveral. 

At which Ifland was you in the years 1781 and 1782? 

At the I Hands of Antigua and Jamaica. 

How long did you flop at Antigua, and how long at Ja- 
' But ? a few days at Antigua, and five or fix months at Jamaica. 

And then the Witnefs was direfted to withdraw. 

Mercurii , 28° die Aprilis 1790. 

Charles BERNS WADSTROM, Efquire, called in. 

Mr Wadftrom expreffed his wifh rather to anfwer in French, 
on account of his imperfett knowledge of the Lnghfti 
lan-uace- but that he was ready notwithftanding to give 
the^nformation he was pofleiTed of in Enghflr to the beft 

Whereu^Tthe Committee agreed to receive his information 
in FnHifh. and he was examined as tollows. 

Of what country are you a native ? 
Of Sweden. 

Of what profeffion are you • ,. c i; f n nr c f the 

I am in the fervice of the king of Sweden, chief director ot 

affay office of gold and filver. 

Do you flill retain that fituation ? 

Were you ever in Africa? 



[ *9 ] 

In what year ? 

In the years 1787 an ^ * 7 ^ 8 * 

What was the occafion of your going there ? 

The king of Sweden being a great lover of natural hiftory, of 
antiquities, and other curious fubjeds relating to difcoveries, had 
engaged Dr. Spaarman, who having been in Africa, was already 
well acquainted with it, and made me au offer to accompany Dr. 
Spaarman and another Swediih learned gentleman, to fet out for 
Africa, in order to explore the country for the afore-mentioned 

Was any particular department allotted to you in that expedi- 
tion ? 

That part which concerned mineralogy, antiquities, and in ge¬ 
neral what regards the ftate of man in that country. 

Did you proceed from Sweden to Africa dire&Iy ? 

We went firft to France, with recommendations to the French 
Court, to receive further recommendations to the Coaft.—The 
letters containing fuch recommendations I fhould with, with the 
permifiion of the Committee, to produce. 

And the Witnefs being defired to produce the faid letters, 
the fame were delivered in, and copies thereof are as fol¬ 
low : viz. 

* € Colonies. 

*« on a ecrit aux adminilV«r 
** de la Compe en favour 
*• des Spann ann Arrhe- 
« nius, et Wadftrom.” 

“ A Verfailles, le 29 Juillet, 1787. 
u Monfieur, 

“ J’ai recu la nouvelle lettre que 
“ vous m’avez fait l’honneur de m’ecrire 
“ le 16 de ce mois a l’occalion de M rs 
“ Sparmann, Arrhenius, et Wadftrom, qui 
“ fe propofent de voyager en Afrique. Ce 
“ n’eft en effet qu’ avec des marchandifes 
** que 1’on parvient a traiter avec les ha- 
“ bitans de ce continent; mais comme ils 
“ pourroient eprouver des difficultes a cet 
“ egard fur la partie des cotes entre le Cap 
“ Blanc et le Cap Verd, dont la traite 
“ ell refervee a la Compagnie du Senegal, 
“ j’ai ecrit, conformement a vos defirs, a 

f 2o ] 

cette compagnie pour les faire lever; je ne cloute 
“ P as qu’elle ne fe prete, autant qu’il d.pendra d elle, 
“ a procurer aux S 5 Sparmann, Arrhenius, et Wad- 
ftrom, toutes les facilites neceflaires pour le fucces 
“ de leur voiage.” 

“ J’ aI 1 ’honneur d’etre avec untresfincere attachement 
“ Monfieur, * 

“ Votre tres humble et 

K tres obeifiant ferviteur, 

“ M. le B°" de Stael d’HoIftein.” “ ^ ““ * Caft ™ S '” 

“ Monfieur l’Ambaffadeur, 

“ Ja Compagnie s’etoit empreflce d’offrirfes fervices 

« k \^ US J tendVS r k M ‘ M ‘ de S P arman n, Arhenius, 
et Wadftrom. Les ordres qu’elle a refus depuis 

„ a ce de M * le ^ Caftries, et la recom- 
mendation que vous lui avez fait l’honneur de lui 
„ adreffer font autant la recompenfede fon zele que 
€i , es de devoir et d’encouragement. Elle a 
u eu P lu “ eurs conferences avec ces favants fur les 
« S enS de r " ndre leur v °y a g e l’interieur de 

« 1 A iS qUC 5 lffi fut et k moins P™ ible qu’il fera 
w P 0 ?^- 1J s trouveront dans les comptoirs et au- 

„ ? TCS , deS a S e , nts de J a compagnieles renfeignemens, 
u les fecours > les reffources que la colonie peut com- 
t4 P orter > et en attendant ils feront traites avec 
beaucoup de diftindion dans le navire qui va les 
tranfporter au Senegal. 1 

“ ** compagnie fe felicite infiniment d’avoir une pa- 
redie occaljon de temoigner a votre excellence 
combien elle defire de lui etre agreable. 

“ Je fuis avec refped, 

“ Monfieur 1 ’ambaffadeur, 

** Votre tres humble et tres 
ii obeifiant ferviteur. 

Par procuration de la comp 1 ’ du 
“ Senegal, 

“ Fraiffe Ad r D :ur .” 

“ M. le Baron de Stael-Holftein.” 

[ ] 

44 J’ai l’honneur de vous envoyer, Monfieur, la reponfe 
“ de M r de Fraiffe, par laquelle vous verrez qu’il n’y 
“ aura plus de difficultes pour votre paflage et que 
44 celles qui out ete elevees provenoient d’un mal- 
# “ entendu. Je n’al que le temps de vous renou- 

“ veller ainfi qu’a vos compatriotes l’afliirance des 
“ voeux que je fais pour le fucces de votre voyage. 
44 Voudrez vous bien, Monfieur, leur en faire part, 
44 et agreer celle des fentiments que je vous ai 
“ voues. 

44 Le B on Stael de Holftein. 

“ Paris le 24 Abut.” 

“ M. C. B. Wadftrom.” 

What part of the continent of Africa have you vifited ? 

From Senegal down the coaft almoft to Gambia. 

To what European power did Senegal, Goree, &c. then be¬ 
long ? 

x hat part of the coaft belonged then to the French. 

How long were you ever afliore on the Continent at one 
time ? 

I was, at different times, feveral days, and once or twice about 
a week or eight days. 

Were you up any of the rivers ? 

Yes, I was tip the river Joal. 

Did you underftand the language of the natives ? 

But very little j however, it was very eafy for me to converle 
with the natives, who generally fpeak French, Englifti, and even 
Dutch, which languages I fpeak j I mean that the raoft eminent 
Negroes on the fhore fpeak thofe languages. 

Did you make it your bufinefs to converfe with them, and to 
obtain from them all tl;e information they were capable of giving 
you ? 

Yes j by means of one of thole three languages I always found 
people who could interpret what I wifhed to know. 

Is it from memory only that you are about to ftate to the Com¬ 
mittee what you law and heard in Africa, or have you any jour¬ 
nal written at the time, and on the fpot ? 

F I have. 

[ 2 2 ] 

I have, in all my travels, conftantly kept a daily journal in 
fuch a manner as the time would permit (which journal I could 
produce if the Committee fhould wifli to fee it, although it is in 
a very rough Hate), in which I have introduced rough draughts of 
objects that have come under my obfervation j this journal, I have 
now in my pocket. 

Had you any opportunity of knowing how Slaves are obtained 
on that part of the Continent which lies between Senegal and 
Gambia ? 

I think perfectly well; partly from my own experience, and 
partly from good information. 

What judgment then did you form of the ways in which Slaves 
are obtained ? 

Three ways particularly came to my knowledge, by which 
Slaves were obtained on that part of the Coafl: where I was. The 
iirft is, what they call General Pillage, which is executed by or¬ 
der from the king, when Slaving veflels are on the Coafl;; 
the fecond, by Robbery by individuals ; and thirdly, by Stra¬ 
tagem or Deceit, which is executed both by the kings and in¬ 

In what manner is the great pillage ufually executed ? 

It is executed by order of the king, by means of his military, 
who go out on horfeback, armed with guns, piftols, fabres, and 
bows and arrows, and fometimes with long lances ; they let out 
generally in the evening, and feize upon fuch Negroes as are un¬ 

Did you ever fee them a&ually fent out on fuch expedi¬ 
tions ? 

During my ftay at Joal, for about a week, there was fcarcely 
any day that fuch excurfions were not executed by order of the 

What was the occafion of your vifit to Joal ? 

The French Governor at Goree ufed to fend every year pre- 
fents to the Black Kings, to keep up the commerce ; and I with 
my fellow-traveller were permitted to follow one of thefe em- 
baflies that was fent to the king of Barbeflin at Joal. 

Did you put down in your Journal an account of the expedi¬ 

[ 2 5 ] 

tions which you have mentioned to have been fct on foot tor the 
purpofe of getting Slaves i 

It would have been too tedious to have fet down every one, 
they being of fuch a fimilar nature ; but I have fet down a fuf- 
ficient number to have a complcat knowledge of thefe proceed¬ 

Were thefe parties fent out by order of the king ? 

Yes; always. 

Do you know how the king was prevailed on to fend them ? 

When fuch prel'ents are fent, it is become a cuftom that the 
king always, to fhew his gratitude, gives Slaves to thofe who con¬ 
duct thefe embalfies. 

Did the king appear willing and difpofed thus to harrafs his 

fubj eels ? 

No ; he was excited by the French officer and the Mulattoes 
that accompanied the embafly, by means of a conftant intoxi¬ 
cation, to fend out the above mentioned parties for pillage. 

Was it agreed amongft thefe merchants that this mode ffiould 
be taken of prevailing on the king to confent to their pur- 
pofes ? 

Yes ; it was generally every morning upon confultation fo 

Were you ever prefent when the king exprefled any unwilling- 
nefs thus to harrafs his people ? 

Always when he was fober; and I had an opportunity of 
hearing his fentiments at a time when he was fober, which were 
very lenfible—for by recurring to my journal before-mentioned,^ 
I recoiled a converfation between the king and the embalfy to 
the following effect: The king faid, he thought it hard that 
he ffiould be obliged to continually diftrefs his fubjeds ; he com¬ 
plained that the inhabitants of Goree were continually coming 
to Joal under pretence of trade ; that they took occafion to pre¬ 
fent him with various articles ; articles trifling and infignificant 
in themfelves, and which he neither liked nor wiffied lor; and 
that they then came upon him with long accounts, with the 
debts faid to be due, and with pretenlions without end; and 
he was forry to fay concerning the Governor of Goree, that 
the Governor living among tlieie people was always on the fpot 
to hear their tales ; that he liftened too readily to their com- 
6 plaints; 

[ 24 ] 

plaints ; that he thought little of the fufferings of the Negroes ; 
and that he muft certainly have been impofed upon to luffer his 
name to be ufed upon fuch occafions. 

Was this converfation of the king’s interpreted on the fpot ? 

Yes ; I took down, word by word, the interpretation of the 
Mulattoes, and -that at different days, when he held the fame lan¬ 
guage • and I reckon thofe fpeeches among the moft curious 
anecdotes of my journal, with regard to the fenfibility of the na¬ 

Did the king after this order the pillage to be executed ? 

• Yes. 

What is the name of the country to which Joal belongs ? 

The name of the country is Sin, and the name of the king, 
in their language, is Bur, which is the reafon that the king is 
called Burfin, or Barbeffm, which is a corruption of the term. 

Do you believe that the king of Sin pillages in other parts of 
his dominions ? 

Undoubtedly—becaufe the Mulatto merchants from Goree go 
up to the kings of the country, when they are in want of Slaves, 
and excite the kings to fuch pillages, which has been told me by 
the Mulattoes themfelves (who do not make any fecret of it) as 
well as by the French officers. 

What is the name of the country between Sin and the River 
Gambia ? 

Sallum—and the king is called Burfallum. 

Do you know if the king of Sallum alfo praftifes the pil- 
latTG ? 

Although I have not been with him, I know that he pra£lifes 
the fame manner of getting Slaves—of this I was convinced by 
being prefent at Goree when a floop arrived from Sallum, con¬ 
taining twenty-feven Slaves, of whom all, except four, were wo¬ 
men and children taken by pillage, which was told me by the 
captain himfelf. 

Did the captain inform you that it was a common way of pro¬ 
curing Slaves in that country ? 

Not only this captain, but alfo the Mulattoes and merchants 
7 of 

[ 2j ] 

of Gorec in general allured me, that it was an ufual way by 
the kings all over that part of the coaft. 

m JL I § 

What is the name ©f the country between Sin and the river 
Senegal, and to whom does it belong ? 

That is properly divided into two kingdoms, but fince the 
French, two years ago, dethroned the king of Tin, this king¬ 
dom, together with Cayor, belong now to the king of Darnel. 

Does the king of Darnel alfo exercife the pillage on his fub- 
jefts, when there is a demand for Slaves ? 

The merchants and Mulattoes of Goree allured me that was 
the cafe j and although I had not fuch occafion, as at Joal, to 
fee how the Slaves were brought in, and how the parties for pil¬ 
lage were going out, I was plainly convinced of the-lame practice - 
prevailing in his dominions. 

You have mentioned robbery by individuals as one way of ob¬ 
taining Slaves ; what do you mean by thofe terms ? 

I mean by thofe terms, when individuals feize upon one ano¬ 
ther, and bring their prey to the Goree merchants to be fold 
of which I have known feveral inftances v during my ftay at 

Can you fpecify any inftances of this fort ? 

I faw in the Captiveries, or places where the Slaves are kept, a 
woman taken in that way from Rufilque, on the Continent, from, 
her children and hufband, which was explained to me by a Mu¬ 
latto that conducted me ; 1 law very often Negroes brought iir 
from the Continent, who were taken in that way ; 1 had a parti¬ 
cular opportunity to make me acquainted with this mode of tak¬ 
ing Slaves, by a young Slave himlelf, who belonged to one of the 1 
French officers, and who was himfelf taken in that way, in the 
interior part above Cape Rouge; I could Hate feveral inftances,. 
but it perhaps would be too tedious. 

Did this boy defcribe to you the mode of his being, taken ? 

He t'old me that he was taken by robbery from his parents, and 
that fuch robberies happen very often in his country. 

Do you particularly remember that this woman of Rufifque 
before-mentioned was feparated from her children ?. 

G Yes— 

[ 26 3 

Yes—I took the inftance down in my journal from the Mu- . 
latto, who told me it himfelf, and fhewed me the woman:. 


Would not the children alfo have been articles of merchandize 
if brought down ? 

Certainly ; and fo they are when they are not too far off in the 
country \ in which cafe they cannot fupport the fatigues of walking 
down to the fhore. 

In fhort, without particularizing more inftances, is the Com¬ 
mittee to underftand that this was a common practice ? 

During my ftay at that part of the Coaft it was a general way of 
procuring fingle Slaves.—I mean to make a diftindtion between 
pillages, by which they can take feveral at once, being armed 
accordingly, and robberies, which are a furprife upon indivi¬ 

Did you hear of any people in particular on the Coaft who were 
fpoken of as being noted ftealers of men ? 

Yes—I was myfelf very near being in danger from fuch an one, 
whofe name was Ganna, at Dacard ; having agreed to travel with 
him to Senegal, when the great Maraboo of the village hinted to¬ 
me to take care of that man, as he was known to be a thief of 
the above denomination, and employed by the Mulattoes and Slave 
merchants at Goree to procure them Slaves in the afore-men¬ 
tioned manner; the Maraboo told me that he could eaftly take me 
to the king of Darnel, who was then in mifunderftanding with 
the French, by which means I fhould have been expofed to have 
gone into captivity ; that 1 might be redeemed at a great ranl'om 
to be lent back to Goree ; this was afterwards, at iny return to 
Goree, confirmed by leveral of the inhabitants, who congratulated 
me upon my efcape. 

You have mentioned ftratagem and deceit as a way by which 
Slaves are obtained ; can you relate any inftances to explain and 
confirm this affertion ? 

I faw one Negro brought into Goree from Dacard, bought by 
a French merchant during his ftay at Dacard that very fame day ; 
this Negro was viiiting that village from a neighbouring one, and 
coining under the eye of this French merchant, who took a fancy 
to him, and hinted to i'ome of the inhabitants his defire of get¬ 
ting him, he became a captive by the confent of the whole vil¬ 
lage, who had agreed with the merchant about the price of the 


confequently he was delivered to the merchant by 



[ 2 7 ] 

furprife, leaving his wife behind, who kindly defired to follow 
her hufband ; but the merchant, not having merchandize enough* 
obtained only the hufband, who was exceedingly diftrelfed, and 
I law him in his irons at Goree the day of his arrival.—Another 
inftance of the fame kind was as follows: The king of Salluin 
fent for a woman from without his kingdom to coine and fell 
him fome millet; but upon her arrival feized on her and her 
millet, and fold her to a French officer at Goree, who was then 
there, and with whom afterwards I law this woman every day 
during my ftay at Goree. 

Did the young man of Rufifque, whom you have juft now ftated 
to have been feparated from his wife, appear to be difconfolate 
from that circumftance ? 

I endeavoured from curiofity to talk with him, and to encourage 
him ; but he was lying on the ground in a very diftrelfed manner, 
in chains, faftened as is ufual with the frefli Slaves that are brought 

You have hitherto fpoken of the manner of making Slaves in 
the country between Gambia and Senegal; do you know if any 
Slaves are furnifhed from the neighbourhood of the laft-mentioned 
river, or brought down it ? 

All the Slaves fold at Senegal are brought down the river, ex¬ 
cept thofe that are taken in the neighbourhood of Senegal, by the 
robbery of the Moors. 

Were you ever yourfelf on the river Senegal ? 


In what particular part ? 

At the Ifland of St. Louis, and alfo on the Continent. 

Do you know in what way the Slaves are obtained that come 
from the neighbourhood of that river ? 

They are all taken by the Moors, by feizing on them, fometimes 
in large parties, which they call Petty Wars, encouraged by the 
Senegal company, and other merchants depending on the com¬ 

What is the nature of this encouragement ? 

It is generally by articles of merchandize -given to the Moorilh 
kings ; partly to engage the Moors to deliver to them as many 


[ * 8 . ] 

Negroes as poflible, anti partly to prevent the gum arable from 
being carried down to the Englifh at Portandick. 

Whence did you obtain information on this head, and on the 
mode in which thefe Slaves are obtained ?■ 

I obtained the information of thefe particulars from the inhabi¬ 
tants and officers of Senegal; and with regard to the mode, I alfo 
obtained it from the Moors themfelves, and that even in the pre¬ 
fence of the director of the company. 

Is this bounty paid regularly every year, or is it only occa- 
fional ?' 

It is regularly every year, as well to the Moors as- to the other 
nations on the Coaft, as mentioned above, for keeping up the 
commerce; but the year when I was at Senegal,, the Moors re¬ 
ceived a particular bounty, in order to- procure the Company a- 
fufficient number of Slaves, they being engaged according to- 
their charter to deliver every year 400 Slaves to the Colouy of 
Cayenne; and the Company having been diiappointed of their 
annual provifion of Slaves from Galam, by means- of King Dal- 
manny’s having flopped the trade in his dominions. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw* 

JoviSf 29° die Jlprilis 1790. 

CHARLES BERNS WADSTROM called in,, and further 

Can you relate any particulars refpe&ing this floppage of 
the trade by King Dalmanny ; from what motives he flopped 
it, &c. ? 

The King Dalmanny being brought up as a Grand Maraboo 
himfelf, and elected King over that nation, which was the lirft 
inftance in that nation of the fame perfon being Grand Maraboo 
and King, and, in confequence, having had a better education, 
would not fuffer any ftrong liquors to be ufed and being attentive 
to the cultivation of the country, had entirely prohibited the Slave 
trade throughout his whole Kingdom, fo as not even to fuffer 
the paffage of Slaves through his dominions, which include both 


f 29 ] 

fides of the river Senegal; he confequently flopped the whole 
commerce with Galam for that year, by which commerce the 
Company reckoned upon receiving 8co Slaves (which they had 
already bought up at Galam), and for which purpofe there were 
lying at the mouth of the river Senegal feveral veflels to tranf- 
port them. 

Did the Senegal Company, on this interruption of the trade, 
endeavour to prevail on King Dalmanny to depart from his refo- 
lution ? 

Certainly; the Company fent a deputation, with a number of 
valuable prefents to King Dalmanny, which he immediately re¬ 
turned, wiflring not to have any more fuch offers made to him ; 
and I had myfelf an opportunity to be prefent with the Director 
of the Company when thefe prefents were brought back; and 
they were (hewn to me by the Director himfelf, who feemed 
very forry that fuch a heavy expence fhould arife from the deten¬ 
tion of the veffels in the river for fo long a time without a 

What fteps then did the Senegal Company take to procure 
their complement of Slaves, when they could not get them from 
the ufual fources of fupply ? 

They had recourfe to their ufual way on fimilar occafions ; to 
excite and bribe the Moors by gratuities, and to fupply them with 
neceffary arms, gunpowder, and ammunition, to feize on king 
Dalmanny’s fubjedts, and to bring them in to the Company as 

Did the Moors, being thus bribed and fupplied with arms, begin 
their incurfions ? 

On the 12th of January, when I came to Senegal, the Moors 
had already begun their incurfions, and had delivered 50 Negroes 
to the Company, who were taken in the dominions of King Dal- 
manny, and whom King Dalmanny fent down to the Directors of 
the Company to ranfom.—When the meffengers from King Dal- 
manny arrived, the 50 Slaves were already difpatched to Cayenne; 
by which means the Director was of opinion that the accommoda¬ 
tion which might have taken place by the ranfom of thefe Slaves 
was prevented. 

Were any more afterwards brought in by the Moors ? 

There were fome brought in every day. 



[ 3 ° ] 

In what condition were they brought in ? can you defcribe the 
circumftances of their fituation ? 

The greater part were very much wounded by fabres and 

Into what place were they put on their arrival at the fa&ory ? 

In the Slave Hole of the Company. 

Did you ever vilit them there ? 

The Director himfelf conducted me thither with Do£tor Spaar- 
man, with whom he confulted for medical affiftance to be ad- 
mi niftered to them. 

What then appeared to you to be their fituation ? 

Their fituation was very pitiful—I found a great part of them, 
and particularly one, who was lying in his blood, which flowed 
from a wound from a ball in his fhoulder. 

Did you ever hear of the perfons who have employed themfelves 
in feizing others for Slaves being themfelves taken and fold in 
their turn ? 

I can mention the following inftance:—A Negro was feized 
by a Moor, brought in and fold to the Company, and was fhipped 
on board immediately—but fome few days after, the Moor who 
feized him was himfelf taken by a Negro, and brought into Se¬ 
negal, and fold—he was put on board the fame veffel with the 
firft Negro, which caufed a great diforder for fome days.—The 
Company ufed feldom to buy Moors as Slaves for many reafons ; 
but being under a necefiity to fulfil their agreement according to 
their charter with government, they did not lofe any opportu¬ 
nity of providing as many Slaves as poffible, of whatfoever qua¬ 

From whom did you hear this, and have you any note of it in 
your journal ? 

I heard it from the Director himfelf, and I put it immediately 
down in my journal. 

Do you believe that the Europeans are ever guilty of Healing, 
or treacheroufly carrying off the natives of Africa ? 

While I was at Goree, I was informed by Captain Wignie, 
from Rochelle, who was juft arrived from trading in the river 
Gambia, that there were three Englifh veffels cut off by the Ne¬ 
groes, a little before his departure from Gambia, in the month of 


i 3 * ] 

Auguft or September (I think September). This circumftance h6 
mentioned in the following manner :—One of the Captains hav¬ 
ing compleated his aflbrtment of Slaves, was ready to fet fail, and 
received on board feveral of the Free Negroes to take leave, and 
who were treated with liquors—but a favourable wind made him 
take the refolution to fail off with the whole—the wind, however, 
fhifted, and drove him back to the fame part of the fhore ; where, 
not only he was feized and killed, with all his crew, but alfo two 
other Englifh veflels at the fame time, by the animolity that this 
tranfa£tion caufed in the inhabitants. — I have, during my ftay in 
London, by accident fallen in with the infurer of two of thefe 
veflels, who ftated to me the fa£t as being true.—One veflel was 
called the Good Intent, I think, of Liverpool, Captain Gardner j 
the other, I think, was the Fanny, commanded by Captain Ma¬ 
ther, and was from London.—I have reported this fully to the 
Privy Council. As I was informed, both of thefe Captains were 
killed, together with great part of the crew—the remainder came 
to Albreda, the French fettlement in the river Gambia, and were 
there taken care of. 

Did you hear that other inftances of a fimilar fort had hap¬ 
pened at former times ? 

I have heard that fuch inftances happened often on the Coaft, 
particularly by the Dutch and the Englifh—but cannot ftate any 
particular inftance. 

From whom had you, this information ? 

That is the general opinion ; which the French officers told 

Is it your opinion that the Europeans are guilty of any fraudu¬ 
lent practices in the courfe of trade ? 

I have been very often an ocular witnefs to the payment of 
the merchants to the Negroes, and have found how the traders 
avail themfelves of the ignorance of the Negroes in calculation ; 
how they produce falfe meafures; as for inftance, bottles that 
contain but half of the contents of the famples, and mixing 
water with their brandy after the bargain has been made j there 
are fo many methods in almoft every article, by which they can 
deceive the Negroes without their perceiving it, that it would 
be tedious to enumerate them. 

What opinion have you formed of the capacity of the 
Negroes ? 

I confidcr 

[ 3 2 3 

I confidcr their underftanding as not yet being fully improved, 
but is as capable of being in all refpeCts brought to the higheft 
perfection, as thofe of any White civilized nation. \ 

What opinion did you form of their temper and difpofi- 
tions ? 

They were very honed and hofpitable ; and I had not the lead 
fear in palling often days and nights quite alone with them ; and 
they fhewed me all civility and kindnefs, without my ever 
being deceived by them. 

Are the natural and focial affeCtions as ftrong in them, as in 
the inhabitants of other countries ? 

According to all my obfervations on this fcrt of people, I am 
quite convinced that, in regard to the affeCtions, they have them 
in a much ftronger and higher degree than any of the Europeans 
that I have had the opportunity to examine ; and as for focial 
life, I am clearly convinced by my own experience, and by good 
information from many perfons, that, at lead in that part where 
I have been, there is not the lead doubt, but they are capable of 
being foon brought into fuch a date of fociety as we enjoy in 
Europe, when proper opportunity is afforded them. 

Have they any manufactures amongd them ? 

I have been furprifed to fee with what indudry they manufac¬ 
ture their cottons, their indigo, and other dying articles, as well 
as feveral forts of manufacture in wood ; they make foap; they 
tan leather, and work it exceedingly well, and even with good 
tade; they make veffels of clay, fuch as pots, pipes, &c.; they 
work bar iron (which is an article of commerce from Europe) 
into feveral articles, as for indance, lances, indruments for'til¬ 
lage, poniards, &c.; they work in gold very ingenioufly, and fo 
well, that I never have feen better made articles of that kind in 
Europe; a great number of articles for ornaments of gold, filver, 
brafs, leather, &c. 

Do the natives dye their own cloths ? 

Yes; they dye in blue, yellow, brown, and brownilh orange 

From what drug is this blue produced ? 

From indigo; which grows abundantly all over the country, v 

and even fo plentiful, that it often fpoils their ground for millet 
and rice plantations; this indigo is prepared by pounding it in 
large wood mortars; they put a little hot water over it, and 
o make 

[ 33 1 

make a pafte of a certain confiftency, which is afterwards dried 
in the fun; this indigo is, according to the account of officers 
and merchants, who have been in America and the Weft Indies, 
in all refpeCts equal to the heft Carolina indigo; I have brought 
famples with me of the productions of the country, and alfo of 
thele productions manufactured, which I have here in London to 
piotluce, in cafe it thould be required. 


Whence are the yellow and brown dyes you have mentioned 
produced ? 

They are produced from vegetables and feeds, which were 
taken particular notice of by Doctor Spaarman, as being within 
his department; but I have in my collection a kind of beans ufed 
for colouring, and which is alfo a great objeCt of commerce with 
the Moors, who carry them, even over land, to Morocco, upon 
their camels. 

Is their cloth neatly manufactured ? 

Their cloth and their leather they manufacture with uncommon 
neatnefs ; and I have famples with me to fhew in cafe it ffiould 
be deiired. 

Can you particularize any of their leather manufactures ? 

They manufacture faddles, piftol cafes, ffieaths for fabres, bags, 
fandals, and various forts of decorations; fuch as gris-grjs (an 
amulet or fuperftitious ornament), and various other kinds. 

How do they forge their iron ? 

They forge their iron with great dexterity upon anvils of wood 
(which is remarkably hard and heavy), when they have no op¬ 
portunity to get ftone for that purpofe. 

What articles do they work in gold ? 

All forts of ornaments, fuch as ear-rings of great variety in point 
of faffiion, rings, bracelets, and other decorations. 

Are there much of the brown and orange dyes, of which you 
have before fpoken, ufed in that part of Africa you have 
vifited ? 

The whole army of the king of Darnel are drefled in clothes of 
thefe colours. 

By whom are the canoes made which are ufed in thefe 
countries ? 

The canoes are generally made by the Negroes near the fhore 

/ but 

[ 34 ] 

but the trees for thefe canoes are cut and tranfpoited from a great’ 
diftance from the fhore : even fo far, that it requires feveral weeks 
to tranfpoit them down; the trees are brought down by the inland 

In what manner are the trees brought down, and why do they 
go for them fo far ? 

They are brought down by a great number of Negroes at once, 
who draw them with ropes upon pieces of wood that they put 
under them, and the trees are not hollowed out before they come 
to the coaft, to prevent them from breaking in pieces; it is gene¬ 
rally a whole village that undertake l'uch a bulinefs, and bring 
fuch a large tree to a neighbouring village, and fo on till it comes 
to the Ihore ; they receive in return, part in European merchandize, 
and part in fifh and fait, which latter article is prepared from the 
fait water by the Negroes near the Ihore ; they go fo far for them, 
becaufe wood of a clofe texture for this purpofe is verv feldom* 
found near the Ihore. 

Of what materials are the ropes you have mentioned made ? 

They are particularly of a kind of aloe, which growls abundantly 
on the Coaft, and which properly prepared are extraordinarily 
ftrong, and of which I alfo have famples with me. 

How do they carry back, into the interior country, the Euro¬ 
pean goods, fifh, and fait,' which they receive in exchange for 
thefe trees ? 

Partly on camels, and partly upon their heads ; they carry afto- 
nifhing weights upon their heads. 

From the whole of your obfervation and experience, have the 
Negroes a fpirit of commerce in them, and have they induftry in 
proportion to the extent of the market which is open to them for 
the lale of their commodities ? 

Certainly they have an extraordinary genius for commerce • 
and their induftry is in all regards proportionate to their de¬ 

Do you believe that if they had an extenfive market opened to 
them for the fale of their native produce, and if they could no 
otherwife get our manufactures than by the dilpofal of this pro¬ 
duce, their indolence would be fuch as to prevent their fiiDnlvin^ 
the market? b 


[ 35 ] 

Not otherwife than by introducing fome degree of civilization ; 
which would be very eafy in cafe the Slave Trade was not the 
only means of commerce. 

Do you mean then to fay, that if the Slave Trade was abo- 
lifhed, they would extend their cultivation and manufactures ? 

Yes; particularly if fome good European people had enter- 
prifing fpirit enough to fettle among them in another way than 
is the cafe at prefent.—Hitherto no other fort of fettlement has 
been made but by people whofe only delire has been to make 
a fortune in a Ihort time, and then to leave the coaft. 

How does the continuance of the Slave Trade obftrudt the 
progrefs of induftry and civilization in Africa ? 

Becaufe, according to what I have found, that Trade takes up 
folely the minds of the natives, who are continually excited by 
the merchants to engage in that bufinefs; and on the other hand 
have no encouragement or inducement to improve their country, 
and cultivate the productions. 

Are there any- Slaves kept by the natives on that part of the 
continent of Africa you have vifited ? 

At Goree and Senegal there are; but on the Continent there- 
are lcarcely any. 

How are thofe, which there are, generally treated ? 

They are treated very well among themfelves, and they never 
part with their own Slaves, if they have any, becaufe it would 
be dangerous for themfelves if they parted with them, on account 
of the fear of infurredtion among the other Slaves.—This rule 
is obferved generally very ftridtly, even with the French officers 
at Goree and Senegal. 

How is the ifland of Goree fupplied with vegetables, and 
other provifions ? 

From the Continent, by Free Negroes, who come in eight or 
ten canoes almoft every morning loaded with fuch provifions. 

Is rice cultivated in any quantity in this country for fale ? 

Rice is not cultivated at Senegal and down the fhore to Sallum 
in any quantity, but fouth of Sallum down to Gambia, and par- 
I ticnlarly at the River Caramanfa, there is a great abundance of 

rice, which I often have had opportunity to be informed of, by 
feeing m£ny boats or fmall veffels loaded entirely with rice, not 

I only 

[ 36 ] 

only to fupply the inhabitants of Goree and Senegal, but alfo for 
fupplying vefiels there—I have got famples of that rice. 

What is the quality of that rice ? 

The French officers at Goree reckon the rice from Cara- 
manfa to be of the beft quality. 

What is its colour ? 

It is brownifh ; of the colour of corn nearly in the exterior part 
or hufk, but the rice feparated from the hufk is very white—I have 
famples to produce if required. 

Were many curious drugs difcovered by Dr. Spaarman, to whom, 
you faid the botanical part of this commiffion was entrufted ? 

Among about 2000 or nearer 3000 fpecimens of plants which 
he brought with him to the cabinet of natural hiftory, of the 
royal academy at Stockholm ; I heard him often declare that he 
could find, if not the whole, at leaft a great part of the whole 
Materia Medica, and drugs for various manufacturing ufes in this- 
part of the world. 

Does the Slave Trade render it dangerous for the Natives to* 
travel about from one part of the country to another, except in 
parties, or well armed ? 

Certainly; and I confider it is the chief hindrance to the im¬ 
provement of the cultivation; in fo far as the Negroes never 
venture to go out into the fields unlefs very well armed. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Veneris , 30° die A prills 1790. 

Charles BERNS WADSTROM, Efquire, called in, and 

further examined. 

Do the natives of Africa print their cotton cloths ? 

Yes; with feveral forts of wooden ftamps or prints, in which 
they cut out figures according to their tafte—I have got patterns 
of thefe cloths fo printed. 



r 37 i 

-In what manner were the troops of the king of Sin armed 
which went out on the pillaging expeditions? 

They were not fo regularly armed and cloathed as the troops of 
the king of Darnel—but they had generally a large gun, bow and 
arrows, lances, and fometimes piftols. 

When did you firft arrive in Africa, and at what part ? 

I believe it was in the middle of October 1787, but I could 
tell that from my journal.-—We arrived firft at Senegal j but could 
not come on ftiore becaufe of the current, which carried us down 
to Goree. 

When did you take your final departure from Africa ? 

The 19th of January 1788. 

Did Dr. Spaarman, and your other companion, leave it at the 
fame time ? 


How far did you go into the interior parts of Africa, and what 
places in particular did you vifit there ? 

The fartheft I went, as I believe, did not exceed fix Englifh 

miles from the ftiore, or about two or three French leagues_ 

I was at Joal—that was the place where I was fartheft in the 
country.—During my ftay at Joal, I went with my companion 
traveller in the neighbourhood, and to feveral villages on the 
was at Dacard—at Bain—at Rufifque—at Cape Rouge, 

and fome other places between thofe places and Joal_where 

we were on ftiore, I vifited the interior part as far as we could for 
one or two days, according as our time permitted—at Dacard and 
Bain I was quite alone for feveral days at once, and went above 
five or fix miles up in the country with the Negroes refiding on 
the ftiore at Senegal we were for about a week, and went fome¬ 
times on the continent. 

Where did you refide at the other times, when you were not on 
the continent ? 

At Goree and Senegal. 

How many days in the whole do you think you palled on ftiore 
1 upon the continent ? 

I think I can reckon about three weeks altogether. 



[ 38 ] 

Is the evidence you have given the Committee the refult of 
your obfervations and information on the fpct, or have you ob¬ 
tained any part of it by the information of others fince you left 
Africa ? 

It is all the refult of my obfervations and information on the 
fpot, except as to the names of the veffels and their commanders 
which were cut off in Africa, which particulars I obtained fince I 
came to this country; every thing elfe relating to that tranfadlion 
I heard, as before mentioned-by me, in Africa. 

Is kidnapping or Healing of men allowed by the laws, or pu- 
nifhed as a crime, when difcovered,. in the parts you have been 
fpeaking of ? 

It is not allowed by the laws; but I have not heard any fingle 
inftance that fuch a thing has been punifhed, as it is generally 
executed in a manner that can fcarcely come to the knowledge of 

the kings. 


From your information and belief as to the government of that 
country, do you think, if the commiflion of fuch a fadt fhould 
come to the knowledge of the kings, it would not be punifhed by 
them ? 

Yes, I believe it would, particularly if fome European* traders 
were prefent when an examination of fuch a fuppofed offence was- 
going on. I was prefent at Joal when a captive was brought in 
for fome crime ; but the king, although excited by the Mulattoes 
from Goree to condemn him, in hopes that they might have the 
purchafe of him. when convidted, acquitted the prifoneu 

Are any of the Negroes upon the continent of Africa, within 
the limits you have mentioned as having vifited, born Slaves ? 

There are, particularly at Sallum, but fewer higher up the 
Coafl—the farther up you come to the Coafl, the fewer—and on 
the continent, oppofite Goree, there are but very few. 

Are not the wealth and confequence of the great men in that 
country generally eftimated in proportion to the number of their 
Slaves ? 

No—at Sallum the king and the greater people are generally 
efteemed for their wealth, in proportion to the filver and Euro¬ 
pean merchandize that they have—but higher up the Coafl they 
are efteemed rich, according to the quantity of millet that they 
can produce, and of cattle that they have—and alfo of camels and 


[ 39 J 

How Jo the kings, and great men at Sallum, procure their filver 
and European merchandize ? 

The lilver, which confifts particularly in Dutch and Spanifh 
dollars, is in this country the principal trading commerce, with¬ 
out which they cannot do any trade with the king of Sallum ; by 
confequence the Mulattoes and Merchants at Goree are obliged 
always to provide great quantities of them for the trade, as well 
as other merchandizes. 

Do not the kings and great men receive that filver and mer¬ 
chandize in return for Slaves fold by them ?- 



As Slaves then are what the kings and great men give in ex¬ 
change for filver and European merchandize, muft it not be the 
intereft of fuch men to protect their Slaves from the depredations 
of others ?■ 

The king of Sallum generally executes what they call kidnap¬ 
ping here upon his neighbours; but higher up the Coaft, this 
kidnapping is executed by order of the kings, even upon their 
own fubjeCts. 

What number of Slaves are annually fupplied to the Slave flops 
from Joal ? 

I was informed by the Mulattoes of Goree, that the yearly 
quantity was near 1200,. but I have reafon to believe it was not 
fo much. 

What number are fupplied annually from Senegal ?' 

I was informed that the yearly quantity of Slaves, when the 
Trade is open with Galam, amounts to above 1000; but I have 
reafon to believe, that it has exceeded this number in the time 
of the preceding kings of Dalmanny. 

In what parts of the country are the manufactures in gold, 
and other articles you have mentioned, principally carried on ? 

At Senegal, and the whole Continent down to Goree, the Ne¬ 
groes are remarkably fkilful in working gold and iron; but in 
regard to the perfection of fpinning and weaving cotton cloths, 
the inhabitants of Sallum are known for an extraordinary ability, 
which I think depends, for the greateft part, on the goodnefs of 
the cotton, which becomes better and better lower down on the 
Coaft. and of which I have famplcs brought with me from the 


C 4° ] 

principal parts where I have been on the Coaft, even manufactured 
into thread and cloths. 

Are not thofe articles, and particularly thofe manufactured in 
gold, principally the work of the Moors, and not of the Ne¬ 
groes ? 

N 0 -1 have taken Iketcbes or drawings of different manufac¬ 

turing implements, which I have taken from the Negroes, and have 
only had opportunity to fee one Moor, who was eftabliffied at 

Senegal, work in gold.-1 have however realon to believe, that 

among them the art of working in gold is derived from the Moors- 
but that the Negroes are become fo fkilful in working gold in 

W mr l - S , C . alle , d fi ! la S ree ’ that the y are equal to any European 
goldfmith in that branch. 

You have faid “ that the Negroes work ornaments in gold fo 
well that you never have feen better made articles, of that kind 

in Europe; Is the Committee to underftand that that is your 
lenous opinion of them ? 1 

Yes; in regard to fillagrees, and even other articles; I have feen 
buckles that could not have been better made by any European 
goldlmith, except the chapes and tongues, and anchors; and 
there are fcarcely any officers at Goree and Senegal, that do not 
bring to Europe fome famples of fuch manufacture. 

Did you make any difcoveries in Africa in mineralogy and in 
the antiquities of the country ? 

I have brought with me a collection of minerals from that 
part of the coaft where I have been, which chiefly conflfts of fpe- 
cimens of volcanic productions ; and I think that nobody has given 
yet fuch a faithful defcription of the mineral productions of that 
part of the coaft as I flatter myfelf I can give; at leaft I have not 
yet heard from any author that there have been fuch confiderable 
volcanic productions defcribed as I found almoft wherever I have 
been on the coaft. 

Did you go far into the country, on the continent, in fearch of 
minerals ? 

Yes, as far as I have before mentioned. 

When you quitted Africa, did you go from thence direCtly to 
Sweden r J 

No; I returned to Havre. 



t 4* 1 

When did you arrive in Sweden ? 

I have not been in Sweden firice. 

I t 

Have you made any report to the king of Sweden of the refuif 
of your refearches, refpe&ing the fubje&s which were particu¬ 
larly allotted to your attention by him when you firft went to 
Africa ? 

Not yet gs fully as I wifh and hope to do. 

Is the fubftance of your report to the king of Sweden as full 
and particular as the evidence you have given to the Committee, 
refpe3:ing thefe matters ? 

No—but I can take upon me to anfwer, that my monarch will 
be extremely well pleafed that I could have been evidence in a 
caufe that fo much regards humanity at large, before a nation fo 
refpe&able and humane as the Englifh nation. 

Did Dr. Spaarman and the other gentleman you mentioned 
return dire&ly to Sweden as foon as they could ? 

Dr. Spaarman went firft to Paris from Havre, and then here to 
England, where he remained for fome time with me, and after¬ 
wards returned to Sweden ; but the other gentleman, as captain 
in the Swedilh artillery, returned immediately from Havre to 

When did you make the report you fpeak of to the king of 
Sweden ? 

Such reports, without mentioning the particulars, have been 
made feveral times to fuch perfons as have had conftant opportu¬ 
nities of reporting them to the king. 

When did you make the firft report ? 

I cannot remember exactly the time. 

When did you come to this country, after your return from 
Africa ? 

In March 1788. 

Is it your intention to return to Sweden foon ? 

My intention is, and has been for tliefe two years paft, rather 
to pafs my time in fuch a peaceable country as England is at pre- 
1 fent, than to return to my own country, particularly as I have 

been favoured with permiflion from my monarch to be abfent. 


[ 42 ] 

Is it your intention to vifit Africa again ? 

If I could be of any ufe in fuch an undertaking I fhould not 
have the leaft objedion. b 

Have you ever fignified fuch a with and difpofition to any ner- 
fons in this country ? j t*- 

It is well known, as I have taken the liberty of mentioning this 

., he In ' T Councl1 wh “ I firft had the honor,to appear 

before them. 

Have you any plan in agitation for that purpofe at prefent > 

J h e Ve . a ? d l fu rP ofe ^hen that is inveftigated without preju¬ 
dice, it will be found to be framed upon principles intereftW to 
humanity at large, and this nation in particular. g 

rei A n re ? y ° U S ° ing b confe ^ uence of an 7 million from your fove- 

whom'? ^ thC CXpenCe9 ° f this plan to be defrayed, and by 

As J have no regard to any particular intereft, but humanity at 
large is my point in view, I leave fuch to Providence. 7 

£, re * e ex f 1 nces of your voyage, and the plan you mentioned, 
to be defrayed by yourfelf, or by whom ? 

I refer to the anfvver immediately foregoing. 

What part of Africa are you going to, and how foon do you 
mean to fet out ? / uu 

I have not any particular place nor time in view; but as I have 
faid before, if I can be of any ufe to the caufe of humanity at 
large, I have no objeftion to any place, nor to any time, when 
fuch a thing can be executed. 1 

Do the Maraboos deal in Slaves ? 

On fome parts of the Coaft they do, but generally not. 

How do the Maraboos live, and how are they maintained ? 
They live as the other Negroes; they fupport themfelves. 

Do they ever command in the army ? 

No, not that I know of. 



[ 43 ] the cuftom of the French to excite wars to obtain Slaves * 

fn “ y t0 ex cite petty wars or pillages, which are confidered 
to be the fame, but alio private dealing of men. 

Is it the cuftom of the F.nglifli ? 

I cannot anfvver that; the coafl where I have been being entirely 
occnpjed by the French i but I have heard that the Dutch and 
Enghfh frequently ufe that method. 

Are not the fabres and other inftruments which you have fne- 
Jten ot in your evidence manufactured by the Moors 7 ? P 

Not at all; all the fabres as far as I know, are an article of Eu- 
ropean trade all over the coafl ; and, except working in gold, the 
Moors are not at all known for any other induflry, except feizinv 
©n Negroes, and collecting gum arabic. 7 P ° 

virSifw K? of the ki^ss, b thc parts of Afrlca *** 

• } f T'- d ’ durin & m y fta y at Joal, that the king had a certain 
thC trade » but no Panicular taxes; king Darnel I was 
told had feme taxes from his fubjeCts, but fo irregular, that there 

was no regular fyftem of taxation in force. 
toI!w t tTe eS p^„e m ntf d ° ‘ fe “"S 5 fod P a « ! « « 

I did not hear any one inftance of that. 

™ en ^ taxes are made to the kings, are they ge¬ 
nerally made in Slaves, or if not, how are they made ? 7 S 

L have found where I have been that the general taxes which 
kings Darnel and Barbeffin receive from their fubjeCts, confift in 

CWe fnV? 6 ’ they fdl t0 the French fettlemente at 

vooree in great quantities. 

carted oTbyS/' 1 Iha ',\ Sreat Part of the trrfe !n Slaves ia 
carriea on by the princes of the country ? 

•JV Sa,IUm U is a,m ? ft . ^t^ely; at Sin, the king has the prln- 

I do not know. 


I 44 ] 

Did you ever hear of poifon being taken out by the French 
Guinea (hips, or the purpofe for which it was taken ? 

I heard it from two captains of French veflels, and one French 
merchant at Goree ; and it was mentioned to me in a manner 
that I neither wondered at it, nor had the lead doubt of it; be- 
caufe they (hewed me the neceflity of it. When in their paflage 
they are taken by calm, (hort provifions, or contagious (icknefs; 
fuch an inftance was mentioned to me by Captain Le Loup, when 
the commander of a vefiel from Breft was obliged on their paf- 
£age of two or three months to poifon the Negroes ; and that out 
of a cargo of 500 Negroes, there only remained 20 when they 
arrived at the Cape. 

When, in anfwer to this queflion, “ How are the expences of 
“ this plan to be defrayed, and by whom ?” you faid, “ As I 
“ have no regard to any particular intereft, but humanity at 
“ large is my point in view, I leave fuch to Providence;” Did 
you mean any thing more than that the plan is as yet incom¬ 
plete ; and that you truft that, under the guidance of Provi¬ 
dence, it will be brought to an ifliie favourable to the interefts of 
humanity ? 

And the queflion being objected to, 

The Witnefs was defired to explain his meaning in the anfwer 
referred to ? 

I do not know how thefe expences may be paid ; but truft that 
Providence will open means by which they may be paid, and the 
plan put into execution, when once the time comes. 

Had not the Englifh been ufed to trade on that part of the 
* Coaft which you have vifited, previous to its being occupied by 
the French ? 

Yes; and that is the reafon why the Negroes fpeak fuch good 


Did you ever hear that the feveral methods of obtaining Slaves, 
which you have ftated in your evidence, were practices newly 
introduced ? 

No, it had been an ancient cuftom ever fince that part had 
been fettled, as far as I know. 

‘ And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw* 


t 45 i 

And it being propofed to examine 
Major GENERAL ROOKE, a Member prefent: 

And the faid Member having confented thereto j 
He was afked. 

Was you ever in Africa ? 


When, in what part, and for what time ? 

In the year 1779, at the Ifland of Goree, from the 6th of May 
to the 16th of Auguft. 

From what you faw and heard in Africa, do you believe that 
the king of Darnel ever exercifes the Pillage on his own vil¬ 
lages ? 

I never faw it; I have underftood, that when he wanted to fell 
Slaves he made war for that purpofe. 

Whether this war was not fometimes of the nature of a ma¬ 
rauding expedition ? 

I really do not know; I always underftood from the Maraboos, 
that it was a war j that was their cxpreflion to me. 

Did you ever fee any of the wounded people brought in from 
the villages, that had been broken up by the king of Darnel’s 
troops ? 


Did it come to your knowledge that kidnapping was pra&ifed 
in that part of the country ? 


Was it fpoken of as a common practice ? 


Will you relate the circumftances of a proportion, fuppofed 
to have been made to you, for furprizing and fraudulently car- 
rying off a number of the natives of Anica ? 

From the friendly intcrcourfe there was between the king of 
Darnel and me, a number of his inhabitants, attended by lome 

M Maraboos, 

[ 46 ] 

"Maraboos, came over to the garrifon of Goree, under my com¬ 
mand ; it was then propofed to me to fend them on board the 
lhips as Slaves. 

What followed upon this propofition being made ? 

I refufed. 

Was any argument ufed to juftify this iniquitous propofal ? 

They laid it had been done by a former governor ; but on alk- 
ing the Chief Maraboo of Rufifque, lie did not recolledt the cir- 
cumftancc that any Englilh governor had complied with the re- 

Is it from your experience you believe that the captains of 
Slave veffels ever carry off Slaves fraudulently, without paying for 
them ? 

I never recollect but one circumftance of the kind.—A Mara¬ 
boo informed me that four or five of the king of Darnel’s fubje&s 
were on board a merchant lhip then under the guns of the fort-; 
but on application from me they were brought on lhorc, and fent 
to the king of Darnel by his Maraboo—it was then, in excufe, 
laid by the merchantman, that they came on board the fliip drunk 
with fome of his people, and that he meant to lend them alhore. 

Do you recollect whether any of the Maraboos in that neigh¬ 
bourhood had military commands? 


Was it a matter of notoriety that the Moors frequently make 
incurfions for the purpofe of obtaining Slaves ? 

1 really do not know. 

Can you recollect any particular Inftances of kidnapped 
people ? 

I recollect that two or three Negroes were brought to the 
ifland, by whom 1 could never find out; but I fent them imme¬ 
diately to the Main Land at their own requeft. 

From what you favv, did you conceive that this kidnapping 
was reckoned by the natives of the -continent extremely dii- 
graceful ? 

I cannot lay as to the continent; but it was reckoned extremely 
fo among the natives of Goree. 


[ 47 T 

Can you recoiled: about what number of the natives of the 
continent there might be, concerning whom the propofal before 
mentioned was made ? 

I luppofe ioo or i^o, or thereabouts, of men, women, and 
children; they were of all kinds. 

Was you or the officers of the garrifon in general, often upon 
the continent ? 


Had you and thofe officers much communication with the natives 
of the continent ? 

I had a good deal of convention at times with the ditterent 
Maraboos; and fo I believe had the officers of the garrifon. 

Can you ftate what are the chief natural productions of that part 

of the coaft ? # 

Guinea corn and cotton. 

What was the name of the merchant that received thofe Negroes 

on board ? . 

I really cannot tell, there were three or lour imps. 

Who are the Maraboos ? , 

They are chiefs of villages, put there by order of their king. 

Are they priefts, or of what order are they ? 

I do not know-all I know reipeding my iniercourfe with them 
was that my application for leave to cut wood, to make fafcines, 
and\o ereCt batteries, to protect His Majefly’s lfland of Goree, was 
to be made to the Maraboo, who was to obtain me leave from the 
king of Darnel—and likewife my application to furniffi the garrifon 
with water, fowls, Guinea corn, and all things of that lort, was 
through them, and likewife the prefents that I fent to the king of 
Darnel were through the Maraboos. 

Do the Maraboos buy and fell Slaves ? 

A Maraboo came from the king of Darnel, defiring to know 
what number of Slaves the Engliffi merchant ihips could purchafe, 
and faid, that they might have twenty in three days, upon the mer¬ 
chants paying the price the French were accuftomed to give—which 
was 20 per man. 

Do they buy and fell Slaves on their own account ? 

[ 4 « ] 

I do not know.. 

Do you knowhow the Maraboos are maintained > 
i do not. 

How far did you ever go up into the country of Darnel > 

tW Vei V‘ 1 M ^ R f { T € and ^ acart *—never more than, 

three or four miles from the fhore. 

Did you ever fee any quantity of cotton exported from thence?.' 

Did you fee any confiderable quantity of it growing ? 
No great quantity. ° ' 

Did you ever fee any large quantity of indigo 
I do not recollect that I ever did. 

growing ? 

By whom was the propofition made to you for carrying off the 
Negroes you ipoke of? 1 ° 

There were three merchants together that fpoke to me; I was 
on a battery, attending the troops, when Irefufed them ; I do not 
recoiled their names; they never made a fecond propofition to, 

Were the natives of Goree ? 


Of what country were they ? 

Tnglilh merchants. 

Did they refide in Goree at the time ? 

The Ihips were under the garrifon at anchor. 

Were they merchants in thofe ihips? 

I underftood they were captains commanding thofe merchant 

Can you recoiled: the names of the veffels ? 

I do not. 

Had you complied with fuch a propofition, do not you think it 
would have involved you in a war with the king of Darnel ? 



[ 49 ] 

The proportion ftruck me to be fo fhocking, that I never con- 
fidered the confequences that might happen to the king of Darnel. 

Do you recollect enough of the trade to fay, whether it was 
brilk or no while you was at Goree ? 

There was very little trade carried on while I had the honour to 
-command there. 

Can you recollect any particular caufes that ftruck you at the 
time, why there was not much trade carried on ? 

It ftruck me, the war, and the French being in pofleflion of 

Do you recollect any other reafon ? 


Did the cotton which you obferved in that country grow fpon- 
taneoufly ? 


Do you recoIleG whether there were not fome battles fought on 
the continent during your ftay at Goree for Slaves; and whether 
you was not told that it was a common practice to make war for 
that purpofe ? 

I was told of it; I never faw them; but I have heard that that 
was the mode. 


That this Examination of Captain Wilfon, Mr. Wadftrom, 
and Major General Rooke, be reported to the Houfe. 








Reported 4th May 1790. 

Witnefies Examined, 


[ So ] 


reported to the house. 

Mart is, 11 0 die Maii 1790. 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed to take the 
Examination of Witnefies on the Slave Trade. 


Sabbati y i° die Maii 1790. 

RoBERTNORRIS, Efquire, called in and examined. 

Is the evidence Hated to have been delivered by you before the 
Privy Council (in their Report to the Houfe of Commons) a cor- 
rectaccount of the information you then gave. 

To the bell of my recolledtion, I think it is. 

And then the Witnels was directed to withdraw. 

And being again called in ; 

He was afked. 

Is the printed account of the evidence delivered by you at the 
bar of the Houfe of Commons, on the Bill for regula ine ihe 
tranfportation of Slaves from Africa to the Weft Indies, a correct 
statement of the information you then gave ? 


N* a. 

I cannot 

[ St 1 

1 cannot fpeak with precifion to that point; but I fuppofe it 

Do you admit yourfelf to be the author of a publication in- ^ 

tituled, ** A Short Account of the African Slave Trade,” pub- 
lifhed under your name, in the year 1788? 

The queftion being objected to. 

The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put, That 
the Witnefs be called in, and afked the faid queftion. 

It pafled in the negative. 

And the Witnefs being called in ; 

He was afked. 

Had you any communication with the Reverend Mr. Clarkfon, 
at Liverpool, towards the clofe of the year 1787 ? 

I had. 

Was this communication frequent ? 

He dined at my houfe, I believe twice j and we met two or 
three times beftdes. 


Will you ftate the fubftance of any information you then gave 
Mr. Clarkfon, refpeCtr'ng the African Slave Trade ? 

Mr. Clarkfon communicated to me a wifti to have the Slave 
Trade abolished j and upon explaining fome part of his plan, I 
found it was to encourage, by bounties, fhips going to trade there 
for the natural productions of the country; and upon confider- 
ing how fuch bounties Ihould be had, a fum raifed upon granting 
licences to veflels trading there for Slaves appeared the molt ex¬ 
pedient. He alfo mentioned fomewhat about a fettlement to be 
eftablilhed on that coaft; and, I think, I propofed Caramanfa 
river as an eligible fituation. In addition to the bounties, Mr. 

Clarkfon propofed that the Slave veflels fhould be prohibited from 
bringing home Weft India productions, as a reftriCtion upon them. 

I do not recolIeCt any thing more that pafled ; I think that is the 
fubftance of the converfation. 


[ Si ] 

What reception did you give to thefe propofitions ? 

I believe I faid, that the Slave veflels being folely confined to 
that object, would give a greater latitude to (hips employed fokly 
in trading for the natural productions of the country. 

Did then thefe propofitions appear to you to be confident with 
the continuance of the Slave Trade, or virtually to amount to an 
abolition of it ? , 

I think I could not fuppofe that the plan he had in contem¬ 
plation could abolifh the Slave Trade ; but that the veflels trading 
for the natural productions would receive feme protection, and be 
encouraged by the means already mentioned. 

Was you acquainted with the objeCt of Mr. Clarkfen’s vifit to 
Liverpool ? 

He teemed to have two cbjeCts in view; one of which was to 
confirm his good opinion of the Trade for the natural productions, 
and the other to difeover as many abufes as he could in the conduCt 
of the Slave Trade. 

Did you or did you not know, that Mr. Clarkfon’s objeCt was 
the abolition of the Slave Trade ? 

I difeovered an anxious fe’icitude in him to efFeCt it; but at the 
fame time I could not conceive that he could accomplifh it; and 
it was not an immediate, but a gradual abolition which I under- 
flood he was aiming at; for I recolleCt that he propofed to me to 
get a particular friend of his appointed to the command of an 
African Slave fhip, to be procured for him through my recom¬ 

Who was that particular friend ? 

It was Mr. Falconbridge, who has been already examined here. 

Did you or did you not know that the abolition of the Slave 
Trade was the objeCt Mr. Clarkfon had then avowedly in view ? 

I underftood it was the objeCt he had in view, to be effected by 
a gradual operation. 

Did you, or did you not, think that the propofitions made in the 
conversation juft alluded to, would efFeCt gradually, if not imme¬ 
diately, the abolition of the Slave Trade? 

I really do not recolleCt what I then thought they would efFeCt; 
but I prefume that I thought they ’tended to a gradual abo¬ 



[ 53 ] 

Under this impreffion, what reception did they meet with from 
you ? 

I gave Mr. Clarkfon, my opinion of them at the time, and he 
is, I dare fay, much more able than I am, at this diftance of time, 
to fay what I dated my impreffions to be j but as well as I recoi¬ 
led, it was, that they tended to a gradual abolition, and I gave 
him every information that I poflefifed frankly up. n this fubjed. 

Did you concur in framing the propofitions juft allud d to, 
knowing Mr. Clarkfon’s objed to be as before dated, and con¬ 
ceiving they would anfwe his purpofe ? 

Mr. Clarkfon will, I dare fay, do me tbe juftice to fay, that I 
heard him with temper; and though 1 could not think an imme¬ 
diate abolition pradicable or politic, yet that 1 withheld no advice 
on the fubjed from him. 

Did you, or did you not, exprefs your concurrence with Mr, 

Clarkfon in his objed, as dated, of gradual abolition ? 

Yes; and dill entertain the fame opinion, that the African 
Slave Trade will gradually come to that abolition which he wilhed 
for. ( 


Did you approve of thefe propofitions as the means of accele¬ 
rating this event ? 

I believe I fuggefted one of them myfelf, and the other I 
thought was conducive to the end he propofed. 

Is the Committee then to underftand, that you did approve of 
means being ufed to eff.d the gradual abolition of the Slave Trade? 

1 could approve of no abolition of the Slave Trade that was 
not compatible with the fituation of the Weft India lflands; and 
when the neceffities of the Planters there no longer require the 
aid of labourers from Africa, I have always been of opinion that 
the trade will ceafe of itfelf. 

Do you then mean, that it was your opinion that the African 
Slave Trade was to be continued and juftified on the ground 
of political expediency, with a view to the interefts of our 
Weft India lflands; and not on the grounds of juftice and hu¬ 
manity ? 

I am not cafuift enough to decide upon the merits or demerits 
of the African Slave Trade, on any other ground than that of po¬ 
litical and commercial neceflity. r 



C 54 1 

Did you coqfider the African Slave Trade in its relation to juf- 
tice and humanity ? 

Previous to the period referred to, I had formed my own pri¬ 
vate opinion ; which was, that the fubjedts of that trade are in 
general more happily fituated, by being brought to the planta¬ 
tions, than they were in their own country; and when conducted 
with propriety, I think it is confident with my notions of humanity. 

Was it then your opinion, that the necefiities of the Weft India 
Iflands were to prefcribe as to the continuance of the African 
Slave Trade ? 

I conceived fo ; for I confider Slavery as a condition of mankind 
in every age, and almoft in every country; and whilft the necef¬ 
fities of the Weft India Iflands require a fupply of African Slaves 
(being convinced that their condition there is in general as happy 
as it was in their own country), and whilft thole necefiities exift, 
I do not difcover that the caufe of humanity is violated in the 
continuance of that trade. 

Was it your opinion, that the necefiities of our Weft India 
Iflands ought to prefcribe as to the degree of the Slave Trade’s 
being carried on, as well as with refpedt to its continuance ? 

No; for whilft the colonies of other ftates require a fimilar 
fupply (which they would endeavour to procure for themfelves) 
I confider as a commercial man, that we fhould relinquifh an 
important fhare of our commerce if we were to regulate the de¬ 
gree of the trade by the necefiities' of the Britifh Colonies 
alone. • 

In your intercourfe with Mr. Clarkfon beforementioned, did 
any thing pafs refpedting the preventing of our fhips fiom fup- 
plying with Slaves the fettlements of foreign powers ? 

I declare I do not recolledt; but if there did, I am perfuaded 
Mr. Clarkfon can inform the Committee; but as far as my me¬ 
mory ferves me, I believe we had no converfation on this 

Did you know whether Mr. Clarkfon made at the time any 
minute of what pafied in that converfation ? 

I really do not recoil eft. 

Did you at that time believe the wants of .our Weft India 
Iflands with refpedt to Slaves to be very great, and that they would 
long require to be fupplied with them ? 



[ 55 ] 

What I thought then, I prefume is the fame as my opinion 
now; that the Iflands want a fupply of io or 12,000 Slaves an* 
nually j and with refpedt to the time, it was as impoffible for me 
then to define it, as it is at prefent. 

Was it your opinion then that the Slave Trade was to be carried 
on for the purpofe only of keeping up the flock of Slaves then in 
the Iflands ? 

I cannot recoiled: what was my opinion in a convention that 
I have almoft entirely forgotten ; but it is my opinion, that in 
addition to the fupply required for keeping up the flock, an addi¬ 
tional ftrength of labourers is requifite to extend the cultivation of 
the Iflands. 

Were you acquainted with the circumftance of Mr. Clarkfon’s 
having been at Briftol before he came to Liverpool, and with his 
view in going there ? 

Yes ; he told me he had been at Briflol to colled, as far as he 
was able, a colledion or ftate of the abufes faid to have been com¬ 
mitted in the African Slave Trade. 

Did you underftand with what view he was colleding this in¬ 
formation ? 

To bring thofe officers and matters to juftice, who had treated 
their feamen harlhly. 

Did not you underfland, that this was only Mr. Clarkfon’s fe- 
cond objed, and that his main view was to obtain fuch informa¬ 
tion as fhould promote his objed of an abolition of the Slave 
Trade, gradual or immediate ? 

No ; I thought the objed of his journey there was to redrefs 
the injuries faid to be fuftained by individuals, and I gave him 
credit for the attempt j for I do not recoiled his mentioning to me 
any other circumftance that was an objed of his enquiry there, 
than to difcover what violences had been committed by the 
officers againft the feamen. 

Did you underfland, that the objed he had in view, while at 
Liverpool, was the fame as at Briflol ? 

Yes ; fb far as making there fimilar enquiries to what I under¬ 
fland he did at Briftol, and alfo his plan for an eflablifhment in 
Africa, and a gradual abolition of the Slave Trade. 

- t 



[ 55 ] 

Did you conceive this redrefs of injuries to the featnen, or this 
gradual abolition, to be his main object ? 

I corxeived this redrels of injuries to be his immediate objedt ; 
the other parts of his plan I conceived to be a more diftant confi- 
deration, as they could not be effected immediately. 

Queftion repeated. 

I am not competent to anfwer what was his main objedfe 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Limce-) 3 0 die Maii 1790. 

Robert NORRIS, Efquire, called in; and further 


When and where did the converfation before alluded to, re- 
fpedting the gradual abolition of the Slave Trade, pals between 
you and Mr. Clarkfon P 

In the year 1787 at Liverpool. 


Was it in your own houfe, or in any other place ? 

I cannot recolledt particularly; but moft probably at my own 

Were you then, for the firft time, or were you before, acquaint¬ 
ed with Mr. Clarkfon’s view and objedt refpedting the gradual 
abolition of the Slave Trade ? 

I had feen his book on the commerce of the human fpecies be¬ 
fore I had feen Mr. Clarkfon. 

Do you recolledt the circumftances of your firft introduction to 
Mr. Clarkfon ? 

Yes; I was introduced to him upon the quay by a Mr. Rath- 
bone, a merchant, who informed me, that Mr. Clarkfon wiflied 
for fome information refpedting the African Trade, in which I 
had been long engaged; I replied, that I would give him what 



[ 57 ] 

information I knew, and {hew him a manufcript or manufcripts 
refpedting Africa. 

Was it then mentioned, that Mr. Clarkfon was purfuing the cb- ( 

jedl of an abolition of the Slave Trade ? 

I cannot recollect. 

Was the interview, in which the propofitions for the gradual 
abolition of the Slave Trade, before alluded to, were difcufled, a 
meeting by appointment ? 

I really do not recollect. 

When Mr. Clarkfon was firft introduced to you, was there any 
mention made of the fociety inftituted in London for the abolition 
of the Slave Trade, either by Mr. Rathbone, or any other of the 
party ? 

I believe not. 

The following queftion and anfwer being read j viz. 

tc Did you, or did you not, exprefs your concurrence with Mr. 

“ Clarkfon in his objedt, as dated, of gradual abolition ? 

“ Yes j and dill entertain the fame opinion, that the African 
“ Slave Trade will gradually come to that abolition which he 
“ wilhed for:” 

The Witnefs was afked. 

Did you mean, in the above anfwer, that you concurred with 
Mr. Clarkfon in his defign, and wilh for the abolition of the Slave 
Trade, or only that it was your opinion that the propofitions, if 
adopted, would tend to that eftedl ? 

Mr. Clarkfon was introduced to me by a friend, whom I re- 
fpedted ; as his firanger, I wilhed to treat him with courtefy. I 
found him ftrongly imprefled with the accomplifhing of a particu¬ 
lar objedt ; courtefy to a firanger induced me to acquiefce in 
rather than dilcufs the merits of the queftion; and it was my 
opinion that his propofitions, if adopted, would tend to that eftedt. 

At that time I had no expedition of ever feeing Mr. Clarkfon 
again, nor could I intereft myfelf either in the abolition of the Slave 
Trade, or-the emancipation of the Negroes in the Weft Indies, 
which^ was alfo one of his propofitions; but the redrefs of abufes 
committed by officers againft their feamen was an objedt that I de- 
fired as eameftly I prefume as himfelf. v 


[ 58 ] 

Is the Committee to underftand, that you exprefled your appro¬ 
bation of Mr. Clarkfon's objedt of gradual abolition, or only that 
you did not exprefs any dilapprobation of it? 

I have before faid, that I acquiefced, as well from complaifance to 
a ft ranger as from a convidtion which I ftill entertain on my mind, 
that a day will come when the African Slave Trade will ceale. 

Is it then meant’ that though you did not exprefs any difappro- 
bation of Mr. Clarkfon’s objedt, yet that in your own mind you 
condemned it, though complaifance prevented your fpeaking your 
opinion openly ? 

I could not but approve of Mr. Clarkfon’s philanthropy, and 
ftill give him credit for it, though I doubt of the policy of reducing 
his principles into practice j if 1 was to point at any thing repre¬ 
hen lible in Mr. Clarkfon’s condudt, it is abufing a private con- 
verfation in the manner I fufpedt he has done, by making me ftand 
here to fuftain an examination upon it, nearly three years after it 
pafled; a converfation too of which I little expedted ever to have 
had any future mention of. 

Queftion repeated. 

No; I did not condemn it. 

Queftion again repeated. 

1 could not but condemn the meafure, if carried on with precipi¬ 
tation, as being ruinous to the commerce of this country, and to the 
cultivation of the iflands, but at the fame time courtefy (as I faid 
before) to a ftranger, whom l never expedited to fee again, prevented 
me (if I recoil edt right) from debating with him on the merits ou 
demerits of the meafure. 

Do you then mean, that you underftood Mr. Clarkfon s objedt 
to be precipitate and immediate, or gradual abolition ? 

1 do not recoiled! the whole of Mr. Clarkfon’s objedt; our con- 
verfations on the fubjedt were much too fhort for a full explanation 
of a meafure of that importance; but I believe a gradual abolition, 
to be precipitated by his plan, was one objedt of his enquiries at 

Then the following queftions and anfwers being read; viz. 

«« j)id y OU> or did you not, exprefs your concurrence with Mr. 
« Clarkibn in his objedt, as Rated, of gradual abolition ? 

“ \es; and ftill entertain the fame opinion, that the African 

o “ Slave 

[ 59 ] 

** Slave Trade will gradually come to that abolition which he 
“ wifhed for. 

“ Did you approve of thefe propofitions as the means of acce- 
V lerating this event ? 

“ I believe I fuggefted one of them myfelf, and the other I 
c< thought was conducive to the end he propofed.” • 

The witnefs was afked ; 

Is the Committee to underftand, that if you did not highly ap¬ 
prove of Mr. Clarkfon’s obj ft, that at leaft you did not think it 
a meature to be condemned ? 

I gave, in my own mind, Mr. Clarkfon’s heart full credit for the 
philanthropic meafure which he purfued, without his weighing, in 
my opinion, the political and commercial inconveniencies annexed 
t° it; and civility to a ftranger induced me to acquiefce in the mea¬ 
fure rather than condemn it. 

Did you u'e any arguments to Mr. Clarkfon to diffuade him 
from purluing his objeft of gradual abolition ? ( 

I do not recolleft I did $ for 1 found him to cherifh it fo warmly, 
that any attempts upon that head would have bem, in my opinion 
fruitlefs. J r * 

How long was it afer Mr. Clarkfon left Liverpool that you was 
appointed a delegate from the town of Liverpool to be examined 
before the Pi ivy Council, refpefting the African Slave Trad^ ? 

I cannot recolleft what month Mr. Clarkfon left Liverpool in, 
nor do I know when I was appointed a delegate from Liverpool • 
for I was fo appointed at a meeting of the merchants at which I 
was not prefent, without my privity or confent afked, or previous 
knowledge of it; from my firft feeing Mr. Clarkfon to the time of 
my appearance before the Pi ivy Council, it may perhaps be fix 
months j but I cannot {peak exaftly. 

What were the particular abufes in the conduft of the Slave 
Trade, the correftion of which Mr. Clarkfon had in view ? 

I do not recolleft, except what I have before intimated, too 
much feverity faid to be praftifed by the officers, and alfo the re¬ 
gulation of the price of Hops, and the cuftom of paying half the 
Wages in the currency of the Weft India Iflands. 


t 60 ] 


Did you gfTbrd Mr. Clarkfon any information or affiflance to¬ 
wards the execution of this part of his plan ? 

I gave him all the information on that head that I poffefled 

Did you exprefs your concurrence in his idea of the exigence 
of the general ill-treatment of feamen in this trade ? 

RefpeCting the frequency of ill-treatment I differed from him 
in opinion; and he quoted more inflances of it than had ever 
-come within my own knowledge. 

Did you know this ill-treatment to have exifled in any con- 
iiderable degree, if not generally and univerfally ? 

I never heard of many inflances of it in fifteen years experience; 
however there were lome that came to my knowledge. 

From the whole of your own experience, and of the informa¬ 
tion you received from Mr. Clarkfon, did this abufe appear to you 
to exift in any fuch degree as greatly to require correction, and 
to juflify Mr. Clarklon’s endeavours for this objeCt ? 

One fingle inllance alone would jufiify Mr. Clarkfon’s endea- 
vours for this objeCt ; I conceive wanton feverity always merits 
punifhment; the inflances that I have heard of, having not oc¬ 
curred under mine own eye, I cannot be a judge of the provocation 
that occafjoned them ; but if they were as reprefented, I fhould 
heartily embrace Mr. Clarkfon’s fentiments refpe&ing them. 

Did you give any opinion to Mr. Clarkfon as to the general 
practice of -kidnapping of the natives of Africa by their own 
countrymen ? 

I do not recoiled I did; though it is probable I may have 
mentioned it; for a few months afterwards I Hated, in my evi¬ 
dence to the Privy Council, that I fulpt&ed it was praCtifed in. 
fome inflances between the unconnected tribes who inhabit the 
windward coafl of Africa. 


Did you flate your opinion to Mr. Clarkfon refpe&ing the uti¬ 
lity of the African Slave Trade, confidered as the fource of fup- 
ply to the marine of Great Britain ? 

I do not recolkCt I did; but if I did, I probably conceded on 
th it as well as on feveral other points to the opinions which that 
gentlemen entertained, rather than harafs his feelings by deput¬ 
ing opinions which he cherifhed. 


[ 61 ] 

Do you conceive the ftate of Dahomy to be in any fort a fpe- 
cimen of the general (late of Negroland ? 

The inhabitants of the vicinity of Cape Appolonia are fubjeft 
to nearly a fimilarly oppreflive tyranny; they are the only two 
arbit ary governments that I have vifited ; the other diftridts of the 
Gold Coaft have a milder government. 

Do you think, that from the condition of the inhabitants of 
Dahomy or Appolonia, any fair conclufions can be drawn as to 
the condition of the inhabitants of Negroland in general ? 

In drawing conclufions (to have them fair) they fhould be 
drawn from the particular countries, and not by general com- 
parifons; the two com.tries quoted are not a ftandard whereby 
to judge of the adjoining nations on the fea coaft, and I know 
but little of the interior country. 

What is the ufual weight of a bafket or crue of r«ce on the wind¬ 
ward coaft of Africa ? 

A bafket is an indefinite weight; when the rice is brought aboard 
in thofe bafkets, it is meafuied in a ciue, the content of which 
weighs about 30 lb. ( 

Have you read the -entries from Captain Fraf r’s journal or 
trade book, mentioned in the examination of Mr. Falconbndge, 
before the former Seledt Committee on the Slave Trade, and re¬ 
ported by them to the Houle of Commons ? 

1 have. 

What is the date of the firft entry, and of the laft ? 

The 19th of September, and the 10th of November. 

What is the amount of the weight of the total quantity of rice 
mentioned in thofe entries? 

Not quite twelve tons and a half. 

How much of that quantity appears to have been gotten at 
Jurik ? 

Not quite fix tons. 

Do you know whether all the rice which was purchafed by Cap¬ 
tain Frafer’s fhip whilft on the windward coaft, was or was not 
inferted in the journal ? 

The daily confumption of the fhip’s company, and of the few 
Negroes that were on board during the period of time mentioned, 


[ 62 ] 

was, I believe, not included in the quantity ftated in Captain Fra- 
fer’s journal. 

Do not you know tiiat the abolition for which Mr. Clarkfon 
wifhed, was an abolition to be accelerated by means to be made ufe 
of for that purpofe, and not merely a difcoritinuance of the trade 
from the circucnftance of the Weft India Iflands ceafing to want 
any farther fupply ? 

I cannot at this diftance of time take upon me to fay what Mr. 
Clarkfon wifhed; nor do I recollect more of it than a gradual abo¬ 
lition of the Slave Trade, and the emancipation of the Negroes now 
in the Iflands. 

Did you fay, that previous to your converfation with Mr. Clark¬ 
fon you had feen his Eflay on the Slavery and Commerce of the 
Human Species ? 

I did. 

From the fentiments exprefled in that eflay, and from the con¬ 
verfation which you had with Mr. Clarkfon, were you not con¬ 
vinced that his objedt was to ufe means to accelerate that event ? 

From the tenor of his publication and converfation, I might be 
led to fuppofe that he had that objedt in contemplation. 

Was then the concurrence which you have ftated yourfelf to 
have exprefled with Mr. Clarkfon in his objedt, a concurrence in 
that objedt which his writings and his converfation led you to 
fuppofe he had in view? 

I call my condudt, in all my communications with Mr. Clarkfon, 
rather an acquiefcence from deference to a ftranger of his charadter 
and fundtions, than a concurrence with his meafures. 

Had you difapproved of that objedt, which you fuppofed Mr. 
Clarkfon to be in puifuit of at that time, would you have fuggeft- 
ed means which were in your opinion conducive to the attainment 
of that objedt ? 

Yes; becaufe Mr. Clarkfon could not reafonably fuppofe me 
totally ignorant of the trade which he u'as inveftigating; and if I 
had withheld every hint or communication, I might e.xpedt fo be 
deprived of treating a ftranger, introduced to me by a friend I re- 
fpedted, with that civility and hofpitality which I wifhed to do 
during his vifit at Liverpool; befides, one part of Mr. Clarkfon’s 
plan met my moft fincere concurrence; I mean redreffing the 
abufes faid to be pradtifed towards feamen; and I found it im- 

R poflible 


[ 6 3 ] 

pohible to convene him upon the one fubjed, without being 
infen fibly led to the other. 6 

Do you then apprehend that the acquaintance you had with Mr. 
Clarkfon demanded of you, that by propofing means to effed the 
gradual abolition, you fliculd adively concur in the ddlrudion of 
a trade, which compofes “ a confidcrable link of our commerce, 
and is the connecting medium of our foreign and domthic 
trade r” 

I found Mr. Clarkfon fo zealous on the fubjcd, that my ac¬ 
quaintance vvitii him would not jufiify me in prefuming to reafon 
with him againh a fy(lem ruinous to the commerce of this coun¬ 
try, and which I thought at the time he could not poffibly effed. 
I conceived it to be a fine-fpun theory of humanity, and could not 
bring myfelf to think, that men and meafures were fo powesfully 
combined, as I have lince found them, to promote his views. 

Was you of opinion, that any of thofe proportions in which you 
concurred, and whah you apprehended would tend to accelerate 
the abolition of the trade, would tend alio to accelerate that period 
at which the VVeh India ifiands would ceafe to require any farther 
i'upply of Slaves ? 1 

i cannot iay now, that at that time any fuch confideration 
occurred to me ; I do not recolledt that there did. 

When you hated it as your opinion, that the African Slave 
Tiade would gradually come to be aboiifhed, what period had 
you fixed in your own mind for that abolition ? 

It would have been preemption in me to have fixed any; for in 
all my converfations with Mr. Clarkfon on a fubjed which I deem¬ 
ed equally imprudent and impolitic, 1 had fearedy one ferious confi¬ 
deration beyond being commonly civil to him. 

On what grounds do you hill entertain that opinion ? 

I wifh to decline replying to matters of mere opinion—but re- 
fpeding matters of fad I fhall not hefitate to anfwer any quehion 
that I fuppofe myfelfcompetent to. 

Having hated this to be your opinion, you are now alked, what 
were the grounds of that opinion ? 

The rchridions already laid upon the trade, and the meafures fo 
ably and unremittingly purfued in this country to effed it. 


r 64 ] 

Do you con Oder as a commercial man, that it would be for the 
intereft of this country to fornifti with Slaves the Weft Indian 
Colonies of foreign powers, after cur own fhall have ceafed to 
require any further fupply ? 

That is matter of opinion—and ftiould I live to fee the day 
when the Britifh Iflands have ceafed to require any further fupply, 
I fhall be more competent then to form a judgment upon the 
queftion than I am at prefent. 

Then the following queftion and anfwer being read j viz. 

“ Was it your opinion that the necefiities of our Weft In- 
“ dia Iflands ought to prefcribe as to the degree of the Slave 
“ Trade’s being carried on, as well as with refpedl to its conti- 
“ nuance ? 

“ No; /or whilft the colonies of other ftates require a limilar 
“ fupply (which they would endeavour to procure for them- 

Selves) I confider, as a commercial man, that we fhould re- 
“ linquifh an important fhare of our commerce if we were to re- 
“ gulate the degree of the trade by the necefiities of the Britifh 
“ Colonies alone.” 

The queftion was repeated. 

1 fancy there is not a politician or merchant in this country 
but will admit, that fuch a commerce would be to the advantage 
of this country ; for it would be fecuring to the merchants of 
it that profit which would otherwife center with the merchants 
and manufadturers of the countries that continued it. 

Are you of opinion, that “ the African Slave Trade is carried 
on as much to the eafe and comfort of thofe that are the fubjedts 
of it, and alfo of thofe that condudt it, as it is poflible for human 
ingenuity to devife?” 

I beg leave to objedt to the queftion ; becaufe it is a quotation 
From a pamphlet, which I do not think it incumbent 011 me to 
fupport before this Committee. 

Can you undertake to fay, whether all the fhips, which in that 
account from Liverpool which you here delivered, were ftated to 
have been laid up in confequence of the adt commonly called the 
Slave ca.rying Adi, were adtually driven out of the trade by the 
operation of that law ? 

I have 


[ 6S ] 

I have no reafbn to doubt it; for they are dated to have been fo 
laid up in the letter, which contained the lift I had the honour to 
deliver here. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Martis , 4 0 die Mali 1790. 

ROBERT NORRIS, Efquirc, called in; and further 

examined. ) 

Have you not recently received an account of a late rapid in- 
creafe in the French Trade to and from the Coaft of Africa ? 

I have, and I have an abftraCt of the information which I re¬ 
ceived on that head now in my hand, which, if I may be per¬ 
mitted, I will acquaint the Committee with : 

That there had failed, or were fitting out, betweeen the ift of 
June 1789 and the 18th of January 1790, for the African Trade, 
from Nantes 42 fliips or veflels; from Rochelle 12; from Bour- 
deaux 32; from St. Malocs 4; from HarfleurS; from Mar- 
feilles 4; and from Havre 28. In all 130 fliips or veflels, in 
7 months and a half or thereabouts. 

Does your information fpecify, whether any of thefe veflels are 
employed in the Trade for the productions of the country, in 
contradiftinCtion to the Slave Trade? 

It does not. 

Does then the tenor of your information induce you to believe 
that it means the Slave Trade only? 

It does induce me to believe fo. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


[ 66 ] 

The Reverend THOMAS CLARKSON called in, and 


Do you know Mr. Robert Norris, of Liverpool ? 

1 do. 

How, and by whom, were you firft introduced to him ? 

I was introduced to him by Mr. William Rathbone, of Liver-* 
pool. We went to his houfe, which is at a little diftance from 
the town; he was not at home, but his fervant informed us that 
we were likely to meet with him upon Change; we accordingly 
proceeded there, and I was introduced to him in that place. 

In what light were you firft introduced to him, and what pafled 
on the occafion ? 

I was introduced to him as the author of an Eflay on the Slavery 
and Commerce of the Human Species, which had been fome time 
before given to him by Mr. Rathbone for his perufal, and as one 
who had come to Liverpool for information on the fubjedt of the 
Slave Trade j I perfectly recolledt that I then afked Mr. Norris if 
he had read my book, and if he believed the contents of it to be 
true ? He replied, as near as I can recolledt, that he had read it 
with much fatisfadtion, and that it contained the truth: with re- 
fpedt to information to be obtained at Liverpool on that fubjedt, 
he promifed to give me every afliftance in his power, and appointed 
a meeting on the following Sunday morning at his own houfe. 

Were you ever with him afterwards ? 

I was j feveral times. 

Can you recolledt with any precifion how often, and can you 
relate the fort of intercourfe and converfation which palled be¬ 
tween you and him on the fubjedt of the Slave Trade ? 

To the beft of my recolledtion I was at his houfe fix times, 
during which I had long converfations with him on the fubjedt 
of the. Slave Trade; he called upon me four or five times alfo, 
during which the fame fubjedt was continued; I went to his own 
houfe, as I have ftated before, on the Sunday morning; I believe 
Mr. Norris was drefiing at the time, but he came down to me, 
and put into my hands to read, a manufcript which I believe 
was intitled, “ An Account of the Wars and Cuftoms of the 
“ Dahomans f* we went afterwards to church, and I dined with 

S him. 

[ 67 ] 

him, and drank tea with him that day. The poin'.s of difcourfe on 
that occafion were I believe three; namely, the produdtions of 
Africa; the probability of introducing a new and valuable Trade 
in thole produdtions ; and the mode of obtaining Slaves. The 
produdtions which Mr. Norris mentioned to exift there, were 
fuch as mentioned in his evidence before the Pi ivy Council, as 
ftated in the Privy Council’s report. With rcfpedt to the mode 
of obtaining Slaves, he allured me that the greater part were 
kidnapped ; that he fpoke this from having enquired into the 
hiltories of many of tho r e whom he had taken from the coal! of 
Africa in his own veffels ; that he was enabled to enquire in.o this 
by knowing one or two, but I believe one, of the languages of Africa, 
and that their almolt univerfal reply was, that they were kid¬ 
napped, either as they were travelling on the roads, or filhing 
in the creeks, or cultivating their little fpots. I was fo particu¬ 
larly defirous of underftanding him well on this point, that I re¬ 
peated the queltion in future converfations, and his anfwer gene¬ 
rally was, “ Undoubtedly; no perfon can deny it.” In a future 
convention on the fubjedt of African produdtions, he told me, 
that he had brought fome black pepper from Whydah ; which 
black pepper he gave a fpecimen of, Hating, at the fame time, that 
fuch Ipecimen was one argument of the impolicy of the Slave 
Trade. In our future meetings, other fubjedts became the topics 
of converfation, and among thefe, the Iofs of feamen, and the 
cruelties exercifed upon fuch of them as were in the Slave Trade. 

I fhewed Mr. Norris the copies of leveral mufler rolls, taken from 
the original, which I had colledled previoufly at Briftol, and his 
obfervation was, that I Ihould find the fame or nearly the fame 
lofs in the Slave vefiels of Liverpool. With refptdt to the cruel¬ 
ties exercifed upon feamen in that trade, I called upon him one 
morning to inform him, that I was on the point of difcovering a 
murder perpetrated by Captain Brown, of the Vulture, on the 
body of one Peter Green, which murder I had heard of about a 
month before at Brillol. Mr. Norris allowed that great cuelties 
were pradtifed upon feamen in that trade; and he one morning 
came to me in Williamfon Square, and he told me, that he had 
brought with him the journal of a voyage, which would convince 
me that I had not been deceived in that particular; this journal 
he left with me for fome days; I perufed it, and it certainly did 
contain a corroborating proof of the cruelties which I had before 
told him 1 had found out, as exercifed in that trade. At another- 
time, in the evening, he called upon me at the King’s Arms in 
Liverpool; I was called out to him; he told me, that if 1 would 
appoint a morning, he would have a fire lighted, when we Ihould 

*- be 

[ CS ] 

b= byourfelves, and that he would communicate with me as to thfc 
claufes of a Bill which would bring about the abolition of the Slave 
Trade. I accordingly waited upon Mr. Norris, at the time appoint¬ 
ed, at his own houfe; we fat down together, and after much con- 
verfation on the fubjedt, he ditfated, and I wrote; thefe claufes 
were written with his own pen and ink, and in his own room. I 
hid feveral other conventions with hizn, which were lefs material 
than thofe which I have mentioned. 

When you fpeak of kidnapping in your laft anfwer, do you mean 
kidnapping by the natives, or by Europeans ? 

I underftand kidnapping by the natives. 

On the whole, is the Committee to underftand, that you placed 
perfedt confidence in Mr. Norris, both in refpedt to the communi¬ 
cations he made to you, and of his concurring with you in the objedfc 
of the abolition of the Slave Trade ? 

I placed the greatcft confidence on the word of Mr. Norri c , 
and I always conceived him as a zealous friend towards the abo¬ 
lition of the Slave Trade; I placed fo much confidence on his 
word, that on publifhing a fecond edition on the Slavery and 
Commerce of the Human Species, I inferted the circumftance of 
kidnapping, as well as that of the King of Dahomy breaking up 
a village when he wanted Slaves; thele fadts will be found in 
my fecond edition of that book, printed foon after my return * 
from Liverpool, and befo e Mr. Norris’s arrival in London as a 
Liverpool delegate for the continuance of the Slave Trade; and 
I confidered thefe fadts as truly valuable from my confidence in 
him: as a farther proof, I give the following inftance; I was in 
the country, I think in the month of January, when I heard 
that a Committee of Privy Council were to take the fubjedt of the 
Slave Trade into confideration, and to examine witnefles upon it; 
on my arrival in town, I waited upon Mr. Pitt; I told him, I 
hoped he would examine witnefles on one fide of the queftion, as 
well as the other; he replied, that it would be but juft, and 
that juftice fhould be done; I then told Mr. Pitt, that Mr. 
Norris of Liverpool was a gentleman who could give very ma¬ 
terial information on that fide of the queftion which related to 
the abolition of the Slave Trade; I repeated Mr. Norris s ac¬ 
count of the produce of Africa ; the probability which he fup- 
pofed there was of inftituting a new trade in that produce; that 
he could fpeak alfo to the lofs of feamen in the Slave Trade, as 
well as the cruelties exercifed upon them; that he had given me 
claufes for a bill for its abolition; that I was very fearful, how¬ 

t 69 ] 

ever, fituated as Mr. Norris was in Liverpool, he would not be 
willing to come up on that fide of the queftion if an individual like 
myfelf were to write to him, though I knew his heart to be engaged 
on that fide; and 1 therefore wifhed to know from Mr. Pitt, whe¬ 
ther the Committee of Privy Council had a power of ordering up 
witnefles; thinking, if that was the cafe, that Mr. Norris would 
have an opportunity of dating what he had dated to me, without 
difobliging any connections which he might have formed at Liver¬ 
pool j Mr. Pitt replied, that the Committee of Privy Council had no 
fuch power j and defired me, as having taken up the other fide of 
the quedion, to write to him myfelf ; I accordingly did write to Mr. 
Norris, intreating him to come up to London in behalf of the Afri¬ 
cans; this letter I fent inclofed to Mr. Rathbone-, Mr. Rathbone 
wrote to me again, dating, that he had received both my letters, and 
that he had delivered one of them at Mr. Norris’s houfe, but 
that Mr. Norris, and one or two other Gentlemen, were gone to 

Did you fee Mr. Norris after he had thus come up to town ? 

Not immediately; I did not know where to find him; I re¬ 
collected however that he had a brother, who refided, 1 believed, 
at Somerfet Houfe. I was very bufy at that time, but fent my 
brother to Somerlet Houfe to fee Mr. Norris in perfon, and to 
intreat him to perfevere in the fame line of conduCl as that to 
* which I had been a witnefs at Liverpool. My brother waited 
upon him accordingly, but was informed that Mr. Norris lodged 
at the Salopian coffee-houfe. I determined to pay him a vifit 
there, but in the interim was informed by the biftiop of London, 
that Mr. Norris had come up as one of the Liverpool delegates, 
in fupport of the Slave Trade; this circumftance ftruck me with 
much furprize, and I could not help declaring to the bifhop, the 
whole of Mr. Norris’s conduct, nearly in the manner, I believe, 
which I have Hated to this Committee. I wrote alfo the account 
for his lordfhip. I was very much diftrefled at the time, and I 
told him that I did not know how to aCl; that Mr. Norris had 
behaved to me with the greateft attention and refpeCl, and that I 
was fearful, left, by coming forward, I fhould be confidered as 
having violated the laws of hofpitality. I told him alfo, that 
there was a certain duty which I owed to the caufe to incline 
me the other way, and that in this diftrefiing fituation I folicited 
his advice; he defired me to wait upon Mr. Norris in perfon, to 
talk with him upon the fubjeCl, and to beg of him to explain to 
me the reafons of his conduct. In confequence of this, I waited 

1 upon 

t 7 ° ] 


upon Mr. Norris, at the Salopian coffee-houfe, but not finding 
him at home, I left my card. Mr. Norris afterwards called upon 
me, and afterwards fent me a letter, which I have now in my pof- 

The Witnefs being then defired to produce the faid 
letter, the fame was produced and read ; and a copy 
thereof is as followeth; videlicet: 

“ The Reverend Mr. Thomas Clarkfon, N° io, Gerrard 

“ Street, Soho, 

“ My dear Sir, 

** The letter which you did me the honour to ad- 
“ drefs to me at Liverpool miffed me there, and 
“ reached mehereonlyafewdaysago; beingbrought 
“ to me by a gentlemen from thence, who was fo 
“ obliging as to charge himfelf with the care of it. 
c< It gave me the fincereft pleafure to receive this 
“ teftimony of the regard of a gentleman, whom I 
“ fhall ever refpedt and efteem, and whole philan- 
“ thropy claims the admiration of every perfon 
** whofe bofom contains a fpark of humanity. 
“ Upon my return to my lodgings laft .night, I was 
“ honoured with your card, announcing your ad- 
“ drefs, and refolved to wait upon you this morn- 
** > n g > hut the arrival of a pacquet from the Weft 
“ Indies, which called on its way at Charleftown, 
“ has brought me letters from my connexions 
“ there, which oblige me to relinquifh my inten- 
“ tion, from avocations which require my imme- 
“ diate attentions elfewhere: and as I am un- 
“ der an engagement to vifit a friend in the country 
“ to-morrow, and fhall not return till Monday, I 
“ find I fhall not be able to enjoy the pleafure of 
“ waiting on you until fome day early in the cn- 
lt fuing week. 

** Since we parted laft, the fubjedt of our conver— 
“ fation has frequently employed my thoughts; 
l* an( I the force of your arguments, and the juftice 
“ and humanity of your fentiments have imprefled 
4t on my mind a due deference for your opinions; 
“ but we differ in fome points: from commercial 
* 7 ‘ “ and 

t 71 ] 


** and political confederations, I am induced to think 
“ that the benevolence of your plan cannot be 
“ acceded to in tcto. If you will pleafe to turn to 
“ my favourite author, the Abbe Reynal, vol. 1. 
** page 9. you will fee a ftrong argument againft 
** one part of it; and other objeitions occur to 
** myfelf; but I afliire you that whatever my own 
“ private opinions may be, I fhould gladly have 
** declined any public interference in this bufinefs, 
“ could I have refufed it with propriety. The 
** prefent invefligation will I hope tend to correil 
“ whatever abufes exift in the African trade, as well 
“ as to improve the condition and fituation of that 
“ unhappy part of our fellow creatures, whole un- 
“ fortunate lot it is, perhaps, for fome wife though 
“ infcrutable purpofe of opr Creator, to toil tor 
“ their brethren; and every idea tending to fo de- 
“ firable a purpofe is, I truft, as dear to me gs it 
“ can be to any perfon whatever. 

“ Your kind remembrance of Mrs. Norris claims my 
*f warmeft thanks, and I am with every fentiment 
“ of refpeil and friendfhip, 

“ Dear Sir, 

** Your obliged and mod obedient tervanr, 


Salopian, sg Feby. 88. 

“ P. S. I am fo prefled for time that I mud beg 
«* you will excufe this very incorrect letter, which 
“ I aflure you I have not leifure to copy.” 

Was there any other perfon to whom you communicated the 
conduit of Mr. Norris ? 

Yes j I communicated it fo early as the time of the Regulating 
Bill to Sir William Dolben, whom I now fee in the chair of this 
Committee. I have alfo ftated this conduit of Mr. Norris two or 
three times to Mr. Cruden; this I did, becaufe Mr. Cruden was 
one of the mod intimate friends of Mr. Norris, was prefent at the 
firft converfation at Mr. Norris’s houfe on this fubjeit, and perfeitly 
knew the great pains which Mr. Norris had taken to give me 
intelligence on this fubjeit. I defired Mr. Cruden, at both thofe 
times, to tell me how I had aited in his opinion, and whether fuch 
conduit had not been equally ftriktng to him as to me ? At both 

1 thofe 

t 7 * ] 

thofe meetings, in which another perfon or perlons were afways 
prefent, he told me that his opinion of Mr. Norris was of the 
higheft kind; that be had known him for many years, bur confefled 
at each time, 1 believe, nearly the following words: “ His condud 
“ to you at Liverpool, and fince as a Liverpool delegate, embar- 
“ rafles me much.” 

Was it fb generally notorious at Liverpool, that your object there 
was the abolition of the Slave Trade, that Mr. Norris muft have 
known it if he had not been informed of it by yourfelf? 

I was never alhamed of the caufe. I mentioned my objed and 
my fentiments publickly and in all companies. It was a notorious 
fad that I came there with that view. I was frequently pointed 
at in pafiing the merchants upon Change, and I dined in public al- 
muft every day, fo that my object could not fail to have been well 
known in that place. 

Are you fure that you took down in writing the claufes refped- 
ing the abolition of the Slave Trade framed by Mr. Norris and 
yourfelf; at a meeting between you at his houfe, as mentioned in a 
former anfwer ? 

I am quite fure of it; I took with me, both to Briftol and 
Liverpool, fcveral fmall books, in which I wrote down many of 
the falls which I had heard, and the perfons from whom I 
heard them. .Two fads, namely, that of kidnapping being the 
general mode of obtaining Slaves, and that of the king of Dahomy 
breaking up a village when he wanted Slaves, were put down in 
thefe little books, but not in the prefence of Mr. Norris, but 
after having left him, merely to ferve me as memorandums of 
thefe fads; but with refped to the claufes for a bill for the 
abolition of the Slave Trade, they were taken down in his own 
room which faced the garden; and as I have faid before, they 
were written with his own pen and ink, but with my hand. I 
have thefe little books, I believe all of them, to produce if necef- 
fary, which not only contain thofe fads, but much other informa¬ 
tion colleded upon this fubjed. 

And then the WitneL was direded to withdraw. 


[ 73 ] 

And being again called in j 
He was afked, 

Have you here the identical book in which you lay you wrote 
thole claufes ? J J 


Read from it thofe claufes. 

The Witnefs then read as follows: 






[. Make every Slave VelTel take out a licence, and 
let the fum paid for fuch licence be at leaft 
‘ A-50. 

l ’ r ?° SIaVC Ve ^ e, » under ^vere penalties, be 
fuirered to take a tooth, a puncheon of palm oil, 
‘ or any of its productions, from the coaft. 

!* Let no Slave Veflel be permitted to bring a bale 
of cotton, a hoglhead of fugar, or even a naf- 
‘ lenger, from the Weft Indies. 

■* £>' 1 > 000 fi ne for a VelTel that fupplies the Sds- 
‘ niards and French. h 

;. Let every Veflel that goes to Africa for the 
; natural productions of the country receive a 
| bounty. £. 500 for bounty would be adequate 

*2 a WagCS ° f feamen » their provifions, and 
the fores of a veflel of 200 tons for eight 

1 months} £. 300 to be paid at outfit, f. 200 at 
' her return. 

'• bananas to be head quarters and firft fet- 

: dement; they belonged to one Cleland a Mu¬ 
latto} perhaps his family, who remain, would 
fell it. 

• That the De Lofs Illands be the fecond from 
Sierra Leone to Cape Mount. To windward of 
Sierra Lecne there is a trail where the Blacks 
are defendants of the Portuguefe; thefe people 
are induftrious at prefent, more civilized than 
the natives, good boatmen, craftfmen, &c. They 
are free and not dependant on the Portuguefe, a 
fort of Mulattoes, and would eafily be brought 

The River Caramanca, on the Windward or 
Gold Coaft, runs parallel to the fea, and would 
be a moft eligible fituation, both in point of 
defence and productions. 

" 9. Thefe 

[ 74 ] 

“ g. Thefe regulations will deftroy the Slave Trade 
“ in a few years.” 

The Witnefs was then afked. 

Were all thefe claufes fuggefted by Mr. Norris, or any of them 
by yourfelf? 

I cannot fay that all of them were fuggefted by Mr. Norris; 
that claufe whereby it is made neceflary for every Slave Veflel to 
take out a licence came from him; I perfectly well recolledl that 
that claufe which relates to the bounty was fuggefted by myfelf, 
though Mr. Norris affided me in calculating what that bounty 
ought to be to defray certain expences on the voyage, fo that the 
fums annexed are his j I lecolledt alfo having propofed myfelf 
that claufe which fays, that no vefiels fhall be permitted to 
take a Tooth or Palm Oil, or any of the produce of Africa ; but 
that the claufe which ftates, that no Guineaman be allowed to 
bring Weft Indian produce, or even a pafTenger, home, was fug¬ 
gefted by Mr. Norris; as to the claufe which relates to that branch 
of the Slave Trade carried on by the French and Spaniards, I 
cannot accurately fay who propofed it; but Mr. Norris mentioned 
the fine of £. 1000, mentioning at the fame time that this 
branch of it oupht immediately to be abolifhed, in as much as 
we were fupplying foreigners at the expence of our marine; the 
fettlements alfo, with the order io which they ftand, were men¬ 
tioned by Mr. Norris, though I cannot pofitively fay whether he 
or 1 propofed the fettlements as necefTary; Mr. Norris however gave 
his fan dt ion to the whole. 

Can you then take upon you to fay pofitively, that Mr. Norris 
was then perfectly informed, even as to the claufes in which he did 
nothimfelf fuggeft, and that he entirely concurred in them? 

Undoubtedly he did concur in all the claufes which were put 
down in that book ; for I put down no claufe that was not approved 
of by him, after feparate converfation upon the propriety of 

Did Mr. Norris at any time give you his opinion as to the gene¬ 
ral profitablenefs of the Slave Trade ? 

I recoiled!: that he ftated it to be a lofing trade; and if I 
recolledt, it was on the Sunday, the day of my firft appointment 
to meet him, in the prefence of Mr. Cruden and Mr. Copeland. 
Mr. Copeland had, 1 believe, been a Slave Merchant. 



[ 75 ] 

Can you recoiled when you were firft introduced to Mr. Norris, 
at Liverpool ? 

I fhould fuppofe in the beginning of the month of September j 
but I have no memorandum of it. 

Can you recoiled what interval there was between your laft 
communications with Mr. Norris at Liverpool, and your being 
informed in London, that he was come up as a delegate from 
Liverpool on the Slave Trade? 

I left Liverpool, to the beft of my recolledion, at the latter end 
of Odober, and I believe that I received the information, that 
Mr. Norris was come up as a Liverpool delegate in the month of 
February following j my laft communication, as far as I recoiled, 
with Mr. Norris, might be two or three days before I left Liver¬ 

Did you ever propofe to Mr. Norris to procure, through his re¬ 
commendation, the command of an African Slave Ship for Mr. 
Falconbridge ? 

I think I can take upon me to fay never; having in view the 
abolition of the Slave Trade, I fhould have thought my charader 
would have fuffered much in the opinion of Mr. Ncrris to have 
made him any propofal of the fort; to which I add, that when 
I firft faw Mr. Falconbridge at Briftol, and afked of him informa¬ 
tion relative to the Trade, he told me, on our firft meeting, of 
which I believe a witnefs can be produced, that he had left the 
trade from principle, and would go into it no more j and certain 
I am, the only objed of Mr. Falconbridge’s journey to Liver¬ 
pool was, to affift me in procuring fads for the abolition of the 
Slave Trade. 

Did you ever make fuch a propofal on behalf of Mr. Falcon¬ 
bridge to any other perfon ? 

Certainly not. 

Do you recoiled having obferved to Mr. Norris, upon the Ex¬ 
change at Liverpool, that as the abolition of the Slave Trade could 
not be immediately effeded, it was a pity that humane men were 
not feleded for the command of flave fhips, in the mean time, or 
any thing to that effed ? 

I think it not at all improbable but that I might have made an 
obfervation of that kind j but I have no recolledion of it. 


[ 7« ] 

Was Mr. Falconbridge ever in company with you and Mr. Nor¬ 
ris upon the Exchange at Liverpool, or any other place, at any 
conversations you had together upon the fubjed! of the Slave 
Trade ? 

I recoiled! that it was a long time before Mr. Falconbridge was 
ever known at all to Mr. Norris; I went repeatedly to Mr. Norris’s 
houfe, and to the bell: of my recolledtion, Mr. Falconbridge never 
went with me ; and I recoiled! alfo, that there were very few com¬ 
munications between myfelf and Mr. Norris, at which Mr. Fal¬ 
conbridge was ever prefent; and I have no recolledtion of being 
at the Change with Mr. Falconbridge and Mr. Norris; indeed I 
am clear that I never was converting upon the Change at Liver¬ 
pool, to the bell of my recolledtion, more than two or three times 
during my refidence at Liverpool. 

Do you recoiled! to have feen Mr. Falconbridge upon the Ex¬ 
change at Liverpool at any dillance from, though not adtually in 
company with, yourfelf and Mr. Norris, at any of your conver- 
fations ? 

I really do not recoiled! the circumllance, but it might have 

How long was you at Liverpool upon the whole ? 

I Should think about fix weeks, to the bell of my recolledtion. 

And then the Witnefs w r as diredted to withdraw. 

Mercurii , 5 0 die Mail 1790. 

The Reverend THOMAS CLARKSON called in, and 

further examined. 

You faid, that to the beft of your recolledlion, you called half 
a dozen times at Mr. Norris’s houfe; but did you ever find Mr. 
Norris at home more than twice or thrice ? 

I called, I believe, more than half a dozen times; but found him 
at home, to the beft of my recolled!ion, five or fix: I recoiled! to 
have dined with him twice ; I recoiled! alio having feen him one 
morning, when I Shewed him the copies I had occafion to have 
made from the Briftol mufter rollsI faw him another time at his 
8 own 

[ 77 1 

own houfe, in the morning, when he gave me the pepper from 
Whydah j I faw him alfo another time, when I went to inform him 
of the likelihood of afcertaining the murder by Captain Brown, on 
the body of Peter Green, as mentioned in my examination of 
yefterday. I perfectly recoiled; that thefe were diflind times, but 
I cannot at prefent recoiled any other; I do recoiled the time when 
he gave me the claufes, which is a fixtb time. 

Do you fuppofe, theft curiolity in Mr. Norris to difcover the 
nature of a plan fo new and extraordinary as that you had in con¬ 
templation might have occafioned his attention to you ? 

I always confidered, that Mr. Norris did not confider the aboli¬ 
tion of the Slave Trade as an extraordinary plan j but as a plan 
which ought to be put into execution ; his whole condud to me at 
Liverpool was of a nature to make me form this opinion. 

Did Mr. Norris fhew you his books, containing his accounts of 
the feamen who had failed with him, to convince you that the mor¬ 
tality of feamen was not fo confiderable as you thought it to 

I do recoiled, that Mr. Norris fhewed me fome papers, and 
that he gave me one, which was an invoice for a cargo to Why¬ 
dah. I do not recoiled, that he fhewed me his books relative to 
the lofs of feamen; but I mull do him the juflice to fay, that I 
have heard him ftate to me, that the lofs of feamen on board his 
fhips was little or nothing. This however he did not Hate to me 
with a view of fhewing that I had been deceived in my enquiries 
relative to the lofs of feamen in the Slave Trade j but that there 
were fhips in that trade which went to the Coaft of Africa with¬ 
out any material lofs; and I confidered him at the time as exhi¬ 
biting by fuch flatement, a proof of his own humanity and good 
ufage of the feamen entrufted to his care. 

When Mr. Norris fpoke to you of kidnapping, did you under- 
ftand it to be, from what he faid, a general pradice in Africa, or 
only in particular parts of it ? 

I underflood it to be the general pradice, as far as he could de¬ 
duce the inference from the experience made in his feveral voy¬ 
ages, with an exception only to the mode of obtaining Slaves, as 
exifling in the territories of the king of Dahomy, becaufe he in¬ 
formed me, that that king feized upon a village whenever he was 
in want of Slaves. 

Did you find any mention of kidnapping in that manufcript 


[ 78 ] 

hiftory, which he (hewed you, of the wars and cuftoms of theDa- 
hotnans ? 

I certainly did not, for I have juft made an exception to the 
mode of procuring Slaves as exifting in thofe parts. Mr. Norris 
uniformly informed me, that the cuftom of feizing a village was 
the way in which Slaves were obtained in that country, and of 
courfe I had no reafon to expedt to find kidnapping mentioned in 
a work which was intituled, “ An Eflay on the Wars and Cuf¬ 
toms of the Dahomans.” 

Did you not undeiftand from Mr. Norris, that Dahomy is an 
arbitraly government, the inhabitants of which are all Slaves to 
the king, and that kidnapping could not be pradtifed there ? 

J have already faid, that kidnapping was not pradtifed there j 
it was not neceflarv, according to Mr. Norris’s account, where 
the king could feize a village without being called to any ac¬ 
count for his condudt. 

Upon recolledtion of the converfation you had with Mr. Nor¬ 
ris on the fubjedt of kidnapping, did he not ftate it as a fpecies 
of depredation committed by nations living in a ftate of hoftility 
with each other, and not an adt of individuals committed by the 
Natives on their neighbours and townfmen ? 

He never made, to the beft of my recolledtion, any difcrimina- 
tion between nations and individuals; his words were, which 
are now ftrong in my mind (and which have been fo ever fince) 
“ that on enquiry into the hiftories of feveral of thofe whom he 
had taken from the coaft of Africa in his own vefiels, that their 
almoft univerfal anfwer was, that they were kidnapped, either 
as they were travelling on the roads, or fifhing in the creeks, or 
cultivating their little fpots.” Immediately on returning from 
Mr. Norris’s houfe, I put down his words on this occafion in a 
little journal which I kept, and which I prefented to this Com¬ 
mittee yellerday. 

You fay you had fo much confidence in Mr. Norris, that you 
inferted the circumftance of kidnapping in the fecond edition of 
your book, as related by him j if you either mifunderftood him, 
or were mifinformed by him, are not your obfervations on that 
fubjedt erroneous, and luch as require to be corredied ? 

If I was mifinformed by him, it was his fault; if I mifunder- 
ftood him, I am very forry for having given fuch fadts to the 
public, and (hall always think it my duty to retradt when I find 
myielf in error; I beg leave however to fay, that I think it 

X impoffible 

t 79 ] 

impoflible for me to have mifunderftood him; I was .never 
clearer as to the recollection of any aflertion in my life, than 
that made by Mr. Norris, which relates to kidnapping, as a 
general mode of obtaining Slaves—I would not with to be un- 
derftood as faying, that the circumftance of kidnapping, as a 
mode of obtaining Slaves, which is mentioned in my book, de¬ 
pends upon the authority of Mr. Norris alone j it depends upon 
many other authorises; I brought in the affertion ufed by Mr. 
Norris only to corroborate that which had been given to the 
public in the firft edition of that book ; with this view alio | 
mentioned other fads colleded in the fame tour. 

You fay, you were informed by Mr. Norris, that the African 
Slave Trade was a lofing one, do you mean at that particular 
period, or univerfally fo? 

I do not recoiled: to what period he alluded. 

Did Mr. Norris fay that he had loft money in it ? 

I never heard him ftate any profit or lofs which might have 
accrued to him as an individual concerned in thefe voyages. 

Did Mr. Norris exprefs his approbation of your endeavours to 
redrefs any abufes in the treatment of feamen in the African 
Trade ? 

I never heard him exprefs any approbation or difapprobation of 
any meafures taken by me on that account; he only, as far as I re¬ 
coiled, concurring with me, that it was a trade in which great 
enormities were pradifed on the perfons of feamen engaged in 
it; and that the feamen were much worfe ufed in that than in 
any other trade, which he exprefled firft in my convention with 
him at his own houfe, when I told him of the ufage of Captain 
Brown; and fecondly, at my lodgings in WilliamfonSquare, when 
he came to me with the journal of a voyage made in the Slave 
Trade; by which it would appear that I had not been deceived 
in the accounts given me of the treatment of feamen in that 
trade; and which journal he left with me for many days. 

Did he approve of your plan or fcheme for emancipating the 
Negroes in the Weft Indies? 

1 never was fo abfurd as to think of the emancipation of the 
Negroes at all; the foie objed of my journey to Liverpool was, 
to colled fads for the abolition of the Slave Trade; this dif- 
tindion between abolition and emancipation I fet out with as 
x firft principle, and have preferved to the prefent day. 



[ So ] 

Ts it probable, that more was really meant by Mr. Norris, 
than to redrefs any abufes in the treatment of feamen, or that 
he could be ferious in condemning a trade in which he had 
been long engaged ? 

I believe that he fincerely meant the abolition of the Slave Trade, 
as comprehending many branches which could neither be juftified 
on the principles of humanity or policy; and my condudt, as ex¬ 
plained in my examination of yefterday, is a proof that I thought 
fo; for I not only mentioned him to Mr. Pitt, as I then Rated, as 
a proper evidence on the fide of the abolition, but even w T rote to 
him to come to London in that capacity. 

Did you know the late Mr. Rathbone of Liverpool ? 


What was his general character ? 

I was recommended to hiei as to a very worthy man, and during 
my intercourfe with him at Liverpool, I had no reafbn to confider 
him in any other light. 

Did it not occur to you, that civility to a flranger recom¬ 
mended by Mr. Rathbone might prevent Mr. Norris from con¬ 
troverting opinions which you warmly efpoufed P 

In my opinion no civility ought to prevent a man from telling 
the truth; and I believe it did not; becaufe Mr. Rathbone re¬ 
peatedly told me that Mr. Norris condemned the trade. 

What do you mean by the words ** it did ’not” in your laft 
anfwer ? 

I mean civility to a flranger, on Mr. Rathbone's account, did 
not prevent Mr. Norris from controverting thofe opinions. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Dr. THOMAS TROTTER, M. D. a Surgeon in the 
Royal Navy, called in, and examined. 

Have you ever been in the African Slave Trade ? 

I filled from Liverpool in 1783, furgeon of the Brookes, Cle¬ 
ment Noble, mafter. 

How long were you on the coafl: of Africa ? 

1 I think from the time we made Cape Palmas, till we compleat- 

cd the cargo at Annamaboe, was about ten months. 


Did you in that period make any enquiries concerning the me¬ 
thods of procuring Slaves ? 

I made many enquiries concerning that particular part of the 

Of whom ? 

Of the Slaves themfelves, of the traders, and particularly of 
Accra, a trader at Cape La Hou. 

Had you any, and what reafon to believe that the intelligence 
you received might be relied upon ? 

Accra particularly had no intereft in deceiving me; befides, the 
man was well known to the Englifh who traded there, as a man of 
great integrity. I found him a moft intelligent man, and he pof- 
fefled a modefly and gentlenefs of difpolition I never afterwards 
met with in any Black trader. 

What was the general refult of the information on this fubjed 
which you received from him, and the other parties you have men¬ 
tioned ? 

I found that the natives of Africa were fometimes condemned to 
flavery for crimes of different kinds; but by far the greater number 
were what they called “ prifoners of war.” 

Did you underftand that many of the Slaves had been reduced to 
that fituation in confequence of crimes ? 

Few Slaves came on board of whom I did not enquire, why they 
were made Slaves. But of all the cargo, I only recoiled two for 
adultery, and one for witchcraft, who, with his whole family, were 

Did you learn the circumftance which attended the convidion 
of the perfons for adultery ? 

One of the men told me, that he had been decoyed by the wo¬ 
man, who informed her hufband, and he was fentenced to pay a 
flave ; but by being a poor man, and unable to pay, he was fold 

Have you found reafon to believe that the women frequently 
pra&ife flratagems of this fort ? 

Yes; the pradice is notorious; the fourth mate of the Brookes 
was entrapped in the fame manner, by a woman that informed her 
hufband, and he ^vas obliged to pay a Slave, otherwife our trade 
was threatened to be flopped. 


[ 8 * 1 

You have mentioned a man, whb, with his family, were fold to 
you on account of witchcraft; can you relate the circumdances of 
the cafe ? 

The man had been a trader, and fpoke a little Englifh; the cir- 
cumftances of his cafe are fhocking; the women on coming on board 
(his mother, wife, and two daughters, I think) exhibited every Sign 
of affliction ; the man himfelf had every Symptom of a fullen 
melancholy; he informed me, that he had quarrelled with the 
chief, or Cabbofheer of Saltpan, who to be revenged upon him, 
accufed him of witchcraft, for which he and his family were con¬ 
demned to Slavery ; after coming on board, he refufed all fufte- 
nance ; early next morning I was called to him, and found he had 
made an attempt to cut his throat, but by only dividing the ex¬ 
ternal jugular vein, he loft little more than a pint of blood; the 
parts were immediately fecured by futures; but on the night 
following he not only tore out the futures, but made a fimilar 
attempt on the other fide; he declared, he never would go with 
White men, looked willfully at the Ikies, and uttered incoherent 
fentences; diligent fearch was made throughout all the rooms, 
but no inflrument could be found, and from the raaged edges of 
the wound, and the blood upon his finger ends, there was every 
reafon to believe that he had torn the parts with his nails; his 
hands were now fecurcd to prevent any further attempt; he ftill 
however adhered to his resolution, refufed all fuftenance, and died 
in about a week or ten days afterwards of mere want of food. 

You have ftated, that by far the greater part of the Slaves confid¬ 
ed of what they called prifoners of war; what meaning did you un¬ 
derhand them to affix to the term “ Prifoners of war?” 

I repeatedly and often afked Accra what he meant by prifoners 
of war; and I learnt, that they had been carried off by a let of 
defperadoes or marauders, whofe bufinefs it feemed to be to ravage 
the country, and carry off the inhabitants in this manner, and to 
fell them as Slaves.—1 found the language among the traders very 
familiar, of the bufhmen making war to make tiade; by which 
they feemed to underftand, procuring Slaves. 

Was this account confirmed to you by any other circumftances ? 

Yes—by the Slaves themfelves—many of whom Shewed me by 
gehure or motion, how the robbers had come upon them—and 
during the Middle Paffage, fome boys in my lbip played a fort of 
game, which they called, Slave-taking, or bufli fighting; and I 
.have feen them perform all the manoeuvres, fuch as leaping, ia'.ly- 

[ 8 3 ] 

ing, and retreating, and all other geftures made ufe of in bufh 
fighting—On making enquiries of this kind among the women, 

I was only anfwered by violent burfts of forrow—I was led by 
enquiries of this nature to alk Accra what they made of their 
Slaves, when the Englifh and French were at war—he Amply an¬ 
fwered, “ Suppofe (hip no come, mafia, no take Slavee”—thofe 
were his words, as near as I can recoiled. 

In your laft anfwer, you have fpoken of boys whom you had 
on board ; can you date whether thefe were brought to your fhip, 
with or without their parents, or other near relations ? 

We had many, both boys and girls, who had not father, or mo¬ 
ther, or any relation on board—many of them told me that they 
had been kidnapped in the neighbourhood of Annamaboe, parti¬ 
cularly a little girl of about eight years of age, who told us fhe 
had been carried off from her mother by the man who fold her to 
our fhip. 

Did any inftances of kidnapping by the natives fall within your 
own perfonal knowledge? 

Yes j I faw Fat Sam, our gold taker, difpatch his canoe for three 
fifhermen employed in the offing; they were immediately brought 
on board, put in irons, and about a week afterwards he received 
payment for them. I alfo remember another man being taken 
in the fame way out of a canoe alongfide of our fhip. bat Sam 
very frequently fent Slaves aboard in the night; thefe I found, 
from their own information, were every one of them taken in the 
neighbourhood of Annamaboe; and I remarked, that Slaves that 
came off in this manner in the night were never paid for till they 
had been kept fome time on board. 

Can you aflign any reafon for the circumffance juft mentioned 
of the payment for thefe Slaves being delayed ? 

I have every reafon to believe that it was the hazard of their 
being claimed, for fome of them were really reftored, particularly 
a boy, who was carried on fhore again by his father, uncle, or 
fome near relation. 

Can you give any information refpeding the kidnapping of 
Slaves by the Europeans ? 

I have only heard of it; but the mafter of the veflel I was in 
urged his gold takers every day that they came on board to get him 
Slaves by any means. 


[ 8 4 ] 

Were the Slaves much crouded in your flup in the Middle Pat- 

^^Yes; fo much fo that it was not poflible to walk amongft them 
without treading upon them. 

Had they room to turn themfelves, or in any fort to lie at 

r p 

By no means; the Slaves that are out of irons are locked fpoon- 

ways, according to the technical phrafe, and clofely locked to one 
another. It is the duty of the firft mate to fee them (lowed in this 
manner every morning! thofe which do not get quickly into their 
places are compelled by the cat, and fitch was their fituatton when 
flowed in thiS manner, and when the (htp had much motion at 
fea, that they were often miferably brutfed agatnft the deck, and 
againft one another. 

Did you find the gratings fufficient for ventilating the Slave 
rooms; and had you any additional means for that purpofe, fuch 
as ventilators or wind fails ? 

I am now fpeaking of the Middle Paffage. When the fcuttles 
are obliged to be fhut, I do not think the gratings are by any 
means fufficient for airing the rooms; for 1 never could myfelf 
breathe with freedom, unlefs I was immediately below the hatch¬ 
way. Ventilators I never heard of being ufed in thefe fhips; we 
had none; a windfall was frequently tried while we lay upon 
the coaft, but I remember of none being ufed in the Middle 


Did the Slaves appear to fuffer from the want of frefh 

aiF Yes ; I have feen their breads heaving, and obferved them draw 
their breath with all thofe laborious and anxious efforts for life, 
which we obferve in expiring animals, fuhjefted by experiment to 
foul air of different kinds, or in the exhaufted receiver of air 
pumps- I have alfo feen them, when the tarpaulins were, through 
ignorance or inadvertently thrown over the gratings attempting 
to heave them up, and crying out “ Kickeraboo, Kickeraboo 
which fignifies, we are dying; on removing the tarpaulins and 
gratings I have feen them fly to the hatchway with all the iigns 
of terror and dread of fuffocation ; many of them, whom I have 
feen in a dying ftate, have been recovered by being brought im¬ 
mediately under the hatchway, or on the deck, for frefh air, but 
' 5 others 

[ S 5 1 

others vvere irrecoverably loft, whom I had every reafon to believe 
were fuffocated, having (hewn no previous figns of indifpofitjon. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


Jovis , 6 ° die Maii 1790 . 


in ; and further 

boa?d°? the Slaves appear greatly dejcded when the y firft come on 

Moft of them, at coming on board, ftiew figns of extreme dif- 
trefs a n d fome of them even looks of defpair, this I attributed 
to a feeling for their fituauon, and regret at being torn from their 
friends and connexions; many of them, I believe, are capable 

fflnflSHS"? th ° fe ™P reffionS fora ver y long time; this I have 
jlluftrated in my Obfervations on Scurvv, published five years 

f. g °» \ the fo ”°wing curious fatf: I thould not have alluded to 
11s inftance, had it not been known to the public before, as 
an evidence on this bufinefs.-The Slaves in the night were often 
heard making a howling melancholy kind of noife, fome thing 

Iui° feXtreme angUlft -. 1 re Peatedly ordered the womaif 
who had been my interpreter in the latter part of the vovage to 

enquire into the particular caufes of this very melancholy fori of 
noife. I found that it was occafioned by finding themfelves in a 
Slave room after dreaming that they had been in their own coun- 
try amongft their friends and relations. This exquifite degree of 
lenfibihty was particularly obfervable among the vvomen, many of 
whom, in thefe fixations, I found in violem hyfteric fits. 7 

Did your veflel leave the coaft in the day or the nwht ? 

In the night, after dark, and when all the Slaves ^vvere fecured 

and {h£WinS ^ nS 

^hr,0 S* for imp “‘ ins yom havin s 6iled In the 



t 86 1 

Every (hip that was in the road when we came there, or that 
failed before our (hip, left the road in the night in the fame man¬ 
ner j the cuftom I apprehend is general from what I have heard. 

Have you ever known an inflance of a living man being found 
chained to a dead one, on the opening of the gratings in the morn¬ 
ing ? 

Yesj more than one or two inftances of this came under my 
own obfervation. 

How many Slaves did you purchafe, and can you (late how 
many you loft in the courfe of the voyage ? 

To the beft of my memory we purchafed upwards of 600, and t 
I think loft about 70 in the voyage. 

Do you know of any attempts to rife on the (hip’s company 
having been meditated, or adually made by the Slaves ? 

Yesj a number of the ftrongeft men in our (hip attempted 
one night to faw themfelves out of irons, which they had done 
with an old knife, knotched for the purpofe, and brought by a 
woman who lived in the cabin j but they were fortunately de¬ 
tected by another Slave giving information. 

Were there any inftances of Slaves jumping over-board ? 

One man jumped over-board while we lay at Annamaboe, and 
was drowned ; another man, in the Middle Paflage, jumped over¬ 
board, but was taken up again ; a woman, after having been 
taken up, was chained for fome time to the mizen-maft, but 
being let loofe again, made a fecond attempt, was again taken up, 
and expired under the puni(hment of flogging for having made 
thefe attempts. 

Are the Slaves, during the Middle Paflage, obliged to take ex- 
ercife, and by what name is this commonly called ? 

I believe the practice of dancing them is very general in the 
trade, and in all (hips; but in ours it was not praftifed till their 
health made it abfolutely neceflary that they (hould be allowed 
fome exercife: the men, who were confined in irons, were 
ordered to (land up, and make what motion they could, mak¬ 
ing a lane at the fame time for thofe who were out of irons to 
dance round the deck, with all thofe awkward geftures and mo¬ 
tions which they call dancing. Some of them, who did not feem 
to relilh the exercife, were compelled to it by a la(h of the cat; 

I but many of them refufed to do it, even with this mode of pu- 

nilhment in a fevere degree. 



t 87 ] 

f)id any of the Slaves ever refufe fuftenance ? 

• I have already related the cafe of the trader who attempted to 
cut his throat; I alfo remember a woman who perilhed from the 
m fame cau f e » by refufing to take food. The fituation of the m in’s 
wounds in his throat put it out of our power to ufe any compul- 
fory means; but the woman was repeatedly flogged, viftuals forced 
into her mouth, but no force could make her fwalicw it, and {he 
lived for the four laft days in a ftate of torpid infenfibility. 

In what manner was your cargo difpofed of in the Weft 
Indies ? 

By what is called a fcramble. People who wifli for Slaves are 
ready, when the flgnal is given them to open the fale, to apply 
their tallies to the Slaves they wifh to purchafe, by ruffling all at 
once among them. This unexpefted manoeuvre had an aftoniffling 
effect upon the Slaves; they were crying out for their friends 
with all the language of affliction at being feparated. On this 
occafion fome hufbands and wives were parted, and many other 

Were the feamen on board your fliip properly fheltered during 
the Middle PalTage? 5 

No; they lay, according to cuftorn, under the booms; and 
when the weather was bad, were certainly expofed very much to 
all its inclemencies. 

Did you fee any of them ill treated by the mafter? 

I remember during the Middle Paffage, fome of them being 
moft unmercifully flogged by him, fo much fo, that I faw from the 
quarrer-deck fome of the feamen coming aft from the forecaftle with 
tne view to refcue the man; on feeing this, he was immediately let 
go; and I remember, that he never afterwards puniffled any of them 
in that manner: he was carrying twelve parroquets to the Weft 
Indies; they either all died, or were killed, by fomebody ; he 
fufpetfed a feaman of killing them, and ordered the man to be 
confined or lalhed for twelve days to one of the topmaft heads, 
during which time he eat nothing but one of thofe parroquets, 
and a pint of water a day; though it was in the Middle PafTage, 
.tne puijithment was rigoroufly inflitfed, and, wonderful to be 
told! the man furvived it. He was a native of Philadelphia, and 
was difeharged from the ftiip in the Weft Indies. 1 have heard 
the man who perpetrated this wanton piece of barbarity relate it 
in a pub ic company, with a degree of triumph and fatisfaftion 
that would have difgraced an Indian fealper. The mafters of the 




{ 88 ] 

veflels who were prefent when he related it, applauded his in¬ 
vention for the novelty of the punilhment. 

What is your opinion of the capacity and difpofition of the 
natives of Africa, l'o far as you have had an opportunity of judg¬ 
ing of them ? 

From what I have fccn, I Ihould fuppofe their minds very 
capable of cultivation; fome part of my evidence certainly Ihews 
that they are capable and fuf eptible of all the focial virtues \ I 
have feen no bad habits among them, excepting thofe who were 
engaged in trade with the White Men, Accra excepted, the man 
whom I formerly mentioned with fome degree of refpedt. 

What was the food given to the Negroes in the Middle 
Paflage ? 

Rice, horfe beans, and Indian com, with ufual condiments 
of palm oil, fait, and pepper. 

Where were thole articles produced ? 

The beans were brought from England, the rice was purchafed 
to Windward, and the Indian corn at Annamaboe. 

Were the rice and Indian corn you purchafed on the Coaft 
fully fufficient for the Ihip’s confumption during the Middle 
Palfage ? 

We had abundance of every thing; a quantity of the Indian 
corn was fold in the Weft Indies. 

Have you reafon to believe that if you had wanted more corn 
on the coaft you could have obtained it? 

Yes; the Indian corn at that time was plenty, and many 
canoes were fent away after our corn-room was full. 

What were the quality and colour of the rice you purchafed 
on the coaft ? 

The rice was a very wholefome food, had a red hulk, but was 
white within. 


Was the furf whilft you lay off the Gold Coaft often fo great 
as to cut off all communication between the Ihore and the 
velftds ? 

I do not remember that the furf was ever fo high during the 
whole time I was on the Coaft as to prevent canoes coming off 
for more than two or three days at moft. 


[ 89 ] 

How long were you on the coaft ? 

I think nearly for ten months all together. 

What was the condition of the three men who were taken by 
your gold taker in the offing ? 

They were fiffiing in the offing; from which I called them 

Were they Slaves or Freemen? 

From what they faid themfelves they certainly were Free¬ 

Did they tell you they were Freemen ? 


By what authority did your gold taker take them ? 

I cannot tell—I knew none. 

Is it ufual in that country to take Freemen and fell them, in 
the manner you have defcribed ? 

I have related another cafe of a man being taken out of a canoe 
along-fide of our (hip; and as it feemed to be done with lb 
much indifference, I Ihould think the practice was frequent. 

Do you know the practice to be frequent ? 

I have in a former part of my evidence faid, that many of the 
Slaves themfelves were taken without committing any crimes, 
and were Freemen, and ought not to have been taken in that 

Queftion repeated. 

I can only fpeak from the information I received, and from 
the few fads that came under my own obfervation. 

Did the three men that were fo taken complain to any body 
of the illegality of their capture ? 

All communication is prevented betwixt the Slaves aboard of 
Ihip, and the traders and canoe-men who come to fell Slaves; 
therefore it could not be fuppofed that any of their connections 
were informed that they were taken and fold. 

Had thefe men no opportunity of communicating to their 
friends, or the people of the country, their fituation ? 

None that came under my obfervation. 



[ JO ] 

Are there not always on board the {hips, either traders or the 
natives of the country ? 

Yes, while the Trade lafts; but the barncado is fo high that 
they cannot even fee over. 

Had they no opportunity of feeing the Slaves, or hearing from 

them ? . 

I do not remember any inftance of a trader being allowed to go 

forward after our barricado was put up. 

Cannot they fee the canoes as they come alongfide, notwith- 
ftanding the height of the barricado ? . 

I do not believe that I ever remember an inftance or their being 
allowed to look over the {hip’s fide; whether they have feen them 
or not I cannot tell. 

Do you mean to fay, that no Slave on board, however illegally 
taken, has an opportunity of making his fituation known to his 

friends, or the people of the country? . . 

I do not know any inftance of any Slave that ever had it in nis 

power; if he did, it was unknown to me. 

If they have no communication, how came the child to he re- 
ftored to its friends as you mentioned ? # 

It is very probable that the trader who fold him was himielt 

the informer. 

Do you think, that the perfon who brought the child aboard 
would condemn his own aft by redeeming the child again ? 

It is very likely that this man was not the kidnapper of the boy. 

How do you know the boy was kidnapped ? 

From what he told me himfelf; that he lived in the neighbour¬ 
hood of Annamaboe. 

If they are withheld from the fight of every body, how can 

they be reclaimed ? , , „ 

They may have been feen in carrying off by people on Ihore, 

who have informed their connections. 

Does the government of the country allow of fuch a pradtice ? 

I know nothing of the nature of the government of the country, 
therefore cannot fay whether it allows of the pradtice or not. 

[ 9i ] 

What time in the night did your fhip fail ? 

I do not particularly remember the hour, but it was growing 

Was your failing a matter of privacy, or publicly known ? 

I was not out of the fhip, fo cannot tell whether it was known 
publicly or not. • 

Were any fignals made that you were going to fail ? 

I do not remember, I took no notice of any occurrence of this 

Do not all African fliips give notice of their failing ? 

I cannot tell, this did not belong to my duty, and I never made 
any enquiries on the occafion. 

Did the other fhips that you mentioned to have failed in the 
night make fignals before they failed ? 

I do not remember any ; and indeed I feldom looked at any other 
fhip ; it was not the duty of a furgeon to take notice of occurrences 
of this nature. 

You faid, that by far the greatefl part of the Slaves in the 
Brookes were prifoners of war; was there any war in the coun¬ 
try when you was there ? 

I faid that Accra called thefe people prifoners of war ; as to the 
term, I have no other meaning than I have given to it. 

Was there any war in the country when you was there ? 

I cannot tell; I made no excurfions up the country. 

Do you fuppofe that the man who attempted to cut his throat 
with his nails was infane ? 

By no means infane; I believe a degree of delirium might come 
on before he perifhed, but at the time when he came on board, I 
believe that he was perfectly in his fenfes. 

Was he perfectly well in health when he came on board ? 

I have faid that he had all the appearance of a fullen melan¬ 

Were the Slaves that you mentioned being brought on board 
* your fhip in the night, brought at that time in order to be con¬ 

C 92 ] 

cealed from the natives, or from the different captains of the fhips* 
that they might not know each other’s trade ? 

I never afked the traders why they brought Slaves on board the 
fhip in the night, nor did they give any reafon for it ; they knew 
their own motives beft themfelves. 

You faid, that to the beft: of your memory you purchafed up¬ 
wards of 600 Slaves in the Brookes, and that you thought you loft 
about feventy ; are you certain that you loft feventy ? 

I am not pofitive as to the particular number; I faid about feventy; 
there might have been a few below or above. 

Will you fay that you loft fixty ? 

I cannot charge my memory with any particular number ; I had 
no reafon at that time for being fo very particular ; if I then knew 
the precife number, it has now efcaped my memory. 

When you faid, that you thought you had loft about feventy, 
did you fpeak from guefs ? 

I fpoke to the beft of my memory. 

How far was your fhip from the fhore ? 

I cannot mention the precife diftance, for we occafionally fhifted 
our birth. 

What was your diftance when you were the neareft to the fhore? 

I cannot tell; I am no feaman, and cannot even hazard a guefs 
upon fuch a queftion. 

Did you ever fee any boats or canoes overfet by the furf ? 

I never faw any. 

Had you any landfmen aboard your fhip ? 

There were fome men that would have been called landfmen in 
a King’s fhip; but, to the beft of my memory, they had all of them 
been at lea. 

You have faid, that not being a feaman you could not judge of 
the diftance which the fhip Brookes lay from the fhore in Africa; 
if the man of war to which you at prefent belong was riding at Spit- 
head, would you think yourfelf feaman enough to make a reafonable 
conje&ure of the diftance fhe was from the fhore ? 

I never needed to hazard a conjedture of the diftance that Spit- 


[ 93 1 

bead was from the fhore, for I have been told that it is about three 

Do you mean from Portfmouth or the Ifle of Wight ? 

That muft depend upon the part of the Spit where the (hip lays. 

Suppofing (he lays three miles didance from Portfmouth, can¬ 
not you form a reafonable guefs what her diftance may be from 
Ryde, in the Ifle of Wight P 

I believe I could fcarce fee Ryde from Spitheaa. 

Did the (hip Brookes lay in a river when (he was trading for 
Slaves in Africa, or on the coaft? 

She lay in what is called the road of Annamaboe. 

Can you fay whether (he lay one, two, three, four, or five miles 
from the fhore, or at what diftance ? 

I cannot fay at which of thofe diftances (he lay, nor at what dif¬ 
tance (he lay. 

How often have you been in Africa ? 

This one voyage of about fifteen months. 

What feveral parts in Africa did you vifit when you was there ? 

If I right remember, we made Cape Palmas firft, traded along the 
coaft to Annamaboe, where our cargo was compleated. 

Were you frequently on fhore at thofe parts ? 

The trade being all conducted aboard of (hip, nobody went on 
fhore but thofe employed to water the (hip. 

Do you mean to fay, you never were on (hore ? 

I never had any communication with the (hore. 

When did you firft engage to go as furgeon in the Brookes ? 

In the fpring of 1783, immediately on the clofe of the war. 

What was your previous employment, or courfe of life ? 

I had the honour to be a furgeon of one of His Majefty’s (hips. 

What (hip, who was the commander, and when were you 

thus appointed to that (hip ? 

I was furgeon of the (loop Buftler, Captain Cox the commander ; 

8 and 

[ 94 3 

and furgeon of the William armed (hip, commanded by Captain 
Rawe, before the conclufion of the war. 

When was your firft appointment? 

It is to be found in the Surgeon’s lift; I do not recoiled! precifely. 

What year was it? 

In 1782. 

When was you appointed to the armed (hip ? 

I have not the warrant about me, fo cannot name the date. 

Cannot you recoiled! the date or the month ? 

My appointment to the William might be in the September of 

When did you quit the Brookes ? 

The moment I could get a boat on her arrival in the river Merfey. 

Does your memory enable you to ftate when that time was ? 
Sometime in the harveft of 1784, I think. 

About what month ? 

Perhaps in Auguft or September. 

At what ifland was your cargo of Slaves fold ? 

At Jamaica. 

When you faid you thought you loft about 70 Slaves out of the 
600, which you fay to the beft of your remembrance you purchafed, 
do you mean that thofe 70 were loft after you left Africa, or that 
any part of them died before you quitted the Coaft ? 

I mean to include the whole number loft during the voyage, whe¬ 
ther by ficknefs or any other means. 

Can you ftate what number of thofe feventy were loft in the Mid¬ 
dle Paflage? 

1 cannot recoiled! the precife number that perifhed in the Middle 

You faid, that you quitted the Brookes as foon as you poflibly 

jB b could. 

could, after the Ship’s arrival in the river Merfey ; had you had any 
difference with Captain Noble during the voyage? 

I know of no difference but abufive language that he very fre¬ 
quently beftowed upon me as the Slaves were dying, which he was 
pleafed to call “ the machinations of the dodtor and devil.’' 

Did he ever complain to you of your inattention towards the 
Slaves ? 

He certainly verv frequently accufed me of ignorance in my pro- 

What reafon have you for faying, that the caufe of Captain No¬ 
ble s punifhing the Philadelphia man, by confining him twelve days 
on the top-maft of the fhip in the manner you have deferibed, was 
his fufpicion of that man’s having deftroyed his twelve parroquets ? 

Only from what Mr. Noble had faid himfelf. 

Can you be certain that that was the exadl reprefentation which 
Mr. Noble made to you of the circumftances you have mention¬ 
ed ? 

The circumftances I have related of the whole cafe are as near as I 
can remember. 

Is the Committee then to underftand, that this treatment of the 
Philadelphia man did not happen in the voyage in which you 
failed ? 

I did not fay that it was in that voyage. 

Had you ever the curiofity to enquire how many of the Slaves on 
board the Brookes had the remarkable coincidence of the dream 
which you mentioned to have related in your Treatife on the 
Scurvy ? 

I was not particular as to the number. 

What relation has fuch an incident to a treatife upon the feurvy? 

Though a medical queftion, I will endeavour to explain it— 
I mentioned it in thefe obfervations on the feurvy, to fhew the 
powerful effedt of fedative paffions of the mind, in pre-difpofing 
the habit to feurvy; and as a proof that even on board of Guinea- 
men thefe Slaves felt all the effedts of thefe paffions, becaufe it was 
a proof they perfedtly enjoyed their feelings and refledtions—it alfo 


[ ] 

(hews under what unfavourable circumftances the Slaves are expofed 
to the horrors of confinement and difeafe on (hip-board. 

Were thefe medical reflections (as applying to the cafes of Slaves 
on (hip-board) the conlequence of thele Slaves have fuffered by the 
leurvy, either betore or fubfequent to the general dream that they 
had ? 

I did not collect the materials for my oblervations upon feurvy 
(though they were then in my hands) till I was requefted to do it 
at the exprefs defire of my friend, the late DoCtor Cullen of Edin¬ 
burgh ; the occurrence was new; feurvy had not been mentioned 
under fuch by any pieteding writer, and it has added 
fome very new faCls to illuftrate the hiftory, and add to our general 
knowledge of the difeafe, the (curvy. 

Did thofe Negroes, in faCt, fuffer by the feurvy ? 

Many in our (hip died of that difeafe; and I have faid that it was 
probable that only a very quick Middle Paflage faved the half of the 
cargo, for about betwixt two and three hundred were tainted with 
this difeafe, in different degrees, at the time we arrived at Antigua. 

Was the nature of their food fuch as to produce the feurvy? 

I do not think the food alone would have done it, had not other 
cauies concurred—thefe are, tire peculiar circumftances of their con¬ 
finement, and the contaminated atmofphere of the (hip, with all thole 
deprefling paflions which muft ever beinfeparable from the fituation 
of a human being, torn from all that is to be valued in exiftence. 

What was the length of the paflage from Africa to Antigua? 

If I right remember, about five weeks; it might be a few days 
above or below j it was reckoned a quick one. 

What (hip do you at prefent belong to ? 

I am at prefent furgeon of the Edgar at Portfmouth. 

How long have you been (b ? 

About fix months. 

Have you taken any degree in medicine ? 

1 received my medical education at the Univerfity of Edinburgh, 
where alfo I rece.ved my Doctor’s degree. 


[ 97 1 

Are not the Slaves, when on board aGuineaman, under the abfo- 
lute power of the captain, as to the place and manner of their con¬ 
finement ? 

All thofe things are certainly under his immediate direction as 
matter of the fhip. 

If a captain fhould have Slaves on board, whom, for any reafon 
whatfoever, he would wifh to prevent from having any communi¬ 
cation, either with perfons on fhore or thofe who fhould come on 
board in canoes, is it not in his power fo to confine them as cer¬ 
tainly to prevent fuch communication ? 

Yes; if he fufpeds any thing from this communication, he cer¬ 
tainly can prevent it. 

When you lay in the road of Annamaboe, do you recoiled whe¬ 
ther or no your diftance from the fhore, whatever that diftance 
might be, was fufficient to prevent your feeling much of the land 
breeze ? 

I do not remember that we ever felt much of the land breeze, it 
being a road perfedly open in all diredions j but as the fhore runs, 
it is not what is called land locked, and there is ufually a frefh fea 

Are you fure that Mr. Noble avowed, that on fome account or 
other he did pumfh one of his feamen by confining or lafhing him 
for twelve days to the top-matt, during which time he had nothing 
but one dead parroquet and a pint of water a day? 

Yes; and I have related it in his own words as near as I can re¬ 

And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

Veneris , y° die Maii 1790. 

Dodor THOMAS TROTTER called in; and further examined. 

Did you ever mention to any perfon the circumftance of the ex¬ 
traordinary punifhment inflided on the Philadelphia failor? 

Immediately on hearing the cafe related, I was fo fhocked with 
the circumftance that I immediately left the cabin, and told the 
8 ftory 

[ 98 ] 

llory to one of the mates—I fhall never forget the impreflion it 
left upon my mind at the time, and I have fince mentioned it 
among my friends as a piece of cruelty I thought unparalleled. 

You have faid that Captain Noble declared the man had no 
other food for twelve days than one of thefe dead parroquets per 
day j what is the ordinary fize of thefe birds ? 

I think they may be about a medium betwixt the common ijpar- 
row and thrufh in fize. 

' t" 

Did Captain Noble confent to ufe every expedient you fuggefted 
for fecuring the Slaves from fuffering by the fcurvy or other 
diforders ? 

By no means—I was often thwarted by him in the exercife of 
my profeflion, particularly in the medicines I prefcribed for thofe 
who had the flux, and in violent burfts of anger he fwore they 
fell victims to my medicines—but his contradicting my prefcriptions 
was much more obfervable when the fcurvy made its appears ce } 
and when I urged him to carry out a great quantity of frefli fruits, 
fuch as limes and oranges, my opinion was treated with contempt, 
and not one twentieth part of the quantity that ought to have 

been carried to fea was in the (hip when we left the coaft_the 

event fully juftified what I had propofed, fer when we had a 
liberal fupply of thefe fruits at Antigua, the recovery of the Slaves 
was rapid beyond example. 

Had the trade for Slaves been flack or brifle at the time of the 
three fifhermen being forcibly brought away in the manner you 
have.before deferibed ? 

The trade at that time, if I remember right, was very flow. 

Had you on board your (hip any perfons nearly related to each 
other, as hufband and wife, brother and filler, &c. ? 

I particularly remember two or three hulbands and wives, and 
many other relations of different degrees of kindred—one of thefe 
had a child which died in the Middle Paflage—I have often carried 
the child from the mother to the father, who always received it 
with much affeCtion. 

Was there any intercourfe between any of thefe near relations 
whilfl on board, and did their conduCt towards each other indicate 
mutual affeCtion ? 

Any intercourfe betwixt the hulbands and wives was carried be¬ 
twixt them by the boys which ran about the decks j but other re- 

C c latives, 

l 99 ] 

latives, fitch as brothers and lifters, commonly wilhed to mefs 
with otic another* and their affe£tron to each other was certainly 
very confpicuous, particularly when difeafed; and, in feme in- 
llances, I have feen their fufferings fuch as would not have degra¬ 
ded the feelings of any civilized people—I mean, by their fut- 
ferings, what they felt for each other. 

. You fay, that other relatives, fuch as brothers and filters, 
wilhed to mefs together; is there not a feparation of the fexes on 
board a Slave veflel ? 

There is a feparation of the fexes; but I meant thofe men that 
were brothers with brothers, and thofe women that were lifters 
with lifters. 

Are boys and girls, under the age of puberty, kept feparate 
from each other on board a Slave Ihip ? 

The boys are generally kept amongft the men, and the girls with 

the women. 

Did any of the hulbands and wives ever endeavour to talk with 
each other whilft on board ? 

I do not remember that there was any intercourfc betwixt them 
but what was carried on by boys, who were allowed occafion- 
ally, at proper times, to come aft. 

When did you hear Captain Noble firft relate the circumftance 
of his punilhing the Philadelphia feaman in the manner you have 
delcribed ? 

It was on a Saturday night when he had company, but the pre- 
cife time I do not remember. 

At what place did he make this relation ? 

In the road of Annamaboe. 

Did he mention the time when he inflided the punilhment on 
the feaman ? 

It was during the Middle Paflage, and on fome former voyage. 

Do you recoiled the perfons who were prefent at that rela¬ 
tion ? 

I cannot charge my memory with the names of any of them; 
when he had company I was fometimes alked to drink a glafs 
with him, but had not always the honor ol being a conftant 
gueft, though at other times I lived in the cabin. 


[ IO ° ] 

To the beft of your recollection, were any of the perfons who 
were then prefent Britifh fubjeCts, who had any fixed refidence 

in Great Britain or elfewhere ? , , _ . r 

l do not remember; the faCt itfelf, as related, ftruck me fo 
forcibly, that I thought of nothing elfe at the time. 

How many days did you flop at Antigua in your way to Ja- 

m I do not remember; I believe no time was loft in putting to fea, 
after we got the neceffary fupply of frefh fruits. 

In what month did you arrive at Antigua ? 

I cannot be certain; it might be June or July. 

Did you go on fhore at Antigua ? 


Do you know from whom the fupply of oranges and limes 
were got, whether from the Negroes or White peop e. 

I never heard. 

State as near as you can recoiled the precife time of your arri- 

Va Iwn onfyfay, that I think it was in one of the months I have 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


Sabbati, 8 ° die Maii 1790 . 

M*. WILLIAM DOVE, called in; and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa? 


In what year, and on what part of the coaft ? 

In the year 1769, from Sierra Leone down to Piccinini Sifters, 
in the (hip Lilly, James Salcraig mafter or captain, which failed 

from Liverpool. 



[ *01 ] 

What is your preftnt fituation and place of refidence ? 

I carry on a tan-yard and cooperage at Plymouth. 

What did you obferve refpefting the. mode of obtaining Slaves 
on the coaft of Africa ? 

In one particular inftance I obferved, that a girl was brought 
on board that was kidnapped whilft lying at Piccinini Sifters, 
brought on board by one Ben Johnfon, who called himfelf Grand 
Trading Man. As foon as he had brought her on board, and re¬ 
ceived the price for her, he fet off in his canoe; he was fcarcely 
gone above ten minutes from the fhip, and made about the diftance 
of too or may be 200 yards from her, till another canoe, with two 
Black men in her, came up along-fide of the fhip, boarded us in 
a great hurry, afked the captain if he had not bought a little 
girl; the captain told them that he had, and that they might now 
fee her; accordingly the girl was prefented to their view; with¬ 
out faying another word, they with great precipitation got down 
into their canoe, and paddled away as hard as they poflibly could; 
in the courfe of about half an hour they came up with Ben 
Johnfon in his canoe; they brought him back to the {hip, 
got him upon the quarter deck, and immediately called out 
to the captain “ Teeffee, teeffee,” which implies a thief; and 
from thence offered him for fale to the captain; Ben Johnfon 
remonftrated repeatedly, faying, “ What, captain, will you buy me, 
grand trading man, Ben Johnfon from Wappoa;” which is a 
place about two or three miles to the leeward of where we lay. 
The captain told him, ** That if they would fell him, he would 
buv him, be he what he would,” or words to that purport; he 
continued remonftrating in the fame manner, but it was all in 
• vain; the captain called the boatfwain (whofe duty it was) to put 
him in irons; accordingly he was taken through the wicket gate 
in the barricado to the main deck, and put in irons with another 
man; from that circumftance I altered my notion that I had for¬ 
merly ente taired refpeding the mode of getting Slaves; for the 
notion that 1 fir ft entertained was, that they were taken in war 
principally, and in order to fave their lives they would not cut 
them off, but brought them on board as Slaves; but I was then 
led to think that they were taken by furprife or kidnapped, from 
that circumfiance of the girl’s being brought on board; and what 
further confirmed me in that opinion was, that I have feen children 
brought on noard feparateiy by themfelves, and men and women 
brought on board without any marks or wounds frefh on them, 
or any that I could lee had been made of old wounds; thele 


[ 102 ] 

tvere my reafons for thinking that they were obtained by kid¬ 
napping, and taken by furprife. 

Do you recollect whether you had many children on board 
your (hip ? 

About forty ; between thirty and forty, both boys and girls, 
fome fucking at their mothers breafts; there were four or five 
born on board of our fiiip during the voyage. 

How were the Slaves in general treated on board your (hip P 

They were in general treated very well, as well as any Slaves 
I fuppofe that were in any (hip on the coaft, except in two or 
three inftances, wherein great cruelty was inflicted. 

Can you fpecify any of thefe inftances ? 

Yes; in the firft inftance, the Myrtle, Captain Welch, belong¬ 
ing to the fame employ from Liverpool, came into the Road¬ 
stead to an anchor; our captain went on board to pay his refpeds 
to him, ftaid the afternoon with him, and came on board in the 
evening fomewhat intoxicated; as foon as he came into the lhip, 
he began to find fault with the officers, laying they had not paid 
due refpedt to him by not attending to the fides to fee that they 
were manned to receive him, and thence took a rope’s end 
and beat feveral of the White people that were on the quarter 
deck; thence he bid one of the hands to ftretch a rope acrofs, 
making one of the ends faft to the fhrouds, and then ordered the 
boatfwain to knock a ftout fellow, a Negro, out of irons, a man 
whom he knew very well; the man being brought upon deck, he 
ordered him to ftand on one fide of the rope whilft’ he ftood on 
the other, and put his foot to the Black man’s foot, and then 
fquared as if to box the man, faying, « That he would learn 

him how to fight,” and fignified to the Black fellow to make 
a blow at him again ; the Black fellow did not know how to do it, 
but however at laft he did, and gave the captain a terrible blow; 
the captain turned about, arid went down into the cabin, brought 
up a horfewhip, and beat him moft unmercifully, firft with die 
lafh part, then turning it and twifting the lafh about his hand, 
with a full fweep with the but end in fuch a manner, till he eva¬ 
cuated both by urine and excrement, infomuch that moft of the 
fhip’s company thought he could not l'urvive it. 

Another inftance; the Black men between decks had drawn the 
( ftaple of the fore lazaretto, where the horfe-beans were kept, and 

had taken fome, about two or three gallons, and hid them away in 

•D d fome 

[ I0 3 1 

feme of the cafes that were between decks; the way it was found 

out was, they heard them eating them in the night; accordingly the ^ 

fecond mate went down, and examined into it, and found they had 

been down and got them up in order to eat, from hunger I fancy ; 

the captain ordered four or five of the people that had done it 

upon deck, gave them a fevere horfewhipping firft; two of them 

that were fuppofed to be the ringleaders he put thumbferews on, 

a thumbferew on each thumb, which tortured them very much, 

as appeared from their groans and cries, the fweat running down 

their faces, and trembling as under a violent fit of the ague ; thole 

were the two in fiances that I referred to. 

Were the men Slaves on board your fhip fettered during the 
greateft part of the Middle Pafiage ? 

All the Middle Pafiage, till we hove in fight of Defeada, an 
ifland in the Weft Indies, excepting fome few that had the flux, 
called meagre Slaves; they were let out to walk the deck when 
they pleafed, and taken great care of in order to recover them. 

Was it necefiary thus to confine the Slaves ? 

I fhoulJ think fo, from the great fuperiority in number they 
were to the (hip’s company. 

Did you ever know any inftances of Slaves that were fettered 
together quarrelling with each other ? 

Yes; fome few inftances in the night time between decks, 
when the fecond mate or boatfwain has gone down and enquired 
into it, and put the matter to rights. 

What judgment did you form of the capacity of the natives of 
Africa ? 

I obferved there were fome of them that feemed apt at taking 
any thing; as an inftance of which, there were two boys about 
fixteen or feventeen years of age, that would work a fifhing line 
from a little oakum we gave them, of any length, very dexteroufly, 
a curious line, by twifting it on their knees, without any other 
way of proceeding, which lii es we often ufed, and caught cat-filh 
with them ; there were others among them, as among our 
country people at home, not fo apt to take things as others are; 

I have feen them in the Weft Indies at different handicrafts, fuch 
as coopers and carpenters, and they made good workmen, equal to 
any of the White people. 

Do they feem in general fo indolent as that they might not be 



t 104 ] 

induced to cultivate the ground, and trade with Europeans for 
the produce of the foil if proper encouragement was offered 
them ? 

1 was not on fliore in Africa to take notice of them there; but 
at the Weft Indies I^have obferved, that there are fome of them 
who are diligent and attentive to fuch duty as is required of 
them ; there are others which are of a lazy caft, juft as our com¬ 
mon people at home are. I have no doubt but that a trade might 
be cultivated with them in Africa. 

Was your (hip fupplied, whilft off the Coaft, with any articles 
of their produce ? 

Yes ; with rice from Sierra Leone; we took in about two tons 
of it; as to pine apples, plantains, bananas, and yams, they were 
brought off to us in great abundance ; as alfo fome honey, and a 
few bottles of the juice of fugar cane. Thofe were the articles 
that I have feen brought off to us. 

Were thefe brought off by the natives, or by the fhip’s boats? 

Brought off by both, but generally by the natives. 

What was the quality of the African rice ? 

Equal in quality to the Carolina, and I have underftood from 
the captain, that it was thought to go further .; it is of a reddifh 
caft, but has no peculiar tafte. 

Do you know whether this rednefs extends through the grain 
itfelf, or whether it is confined to the hufk ? 

The hufk being beat off, it leaves fome little reddifh matter be¬ 
tween the hufk and the rice itfelf, of the nature of flour, which 
does not go through the rice. 

Was there any peculiar appearance on board yourfhip, when the 
tarpaulins were firft taken off in the morning ? 

The tarpaulins were not put on but in cafe of rains; when they 
have been then taken off, the fhip being near flaved, there is a 
fteam then has come up between the gratings, by which means the 
air was communicated to them below, and has relieved them 
when they have been panting for breath. 

What was the general treatment of the failors on board your 
fhip ? 

Generally oppreflive and hard ufage; in one or two inftances, 
I think, particularly fo; in one inftance, the chief mate found a 


t i°5 ] 

leak in one of the barrels of tar, and fome of the tar about the 
decks; the captain was acquainted of it, and called the boat- 
fwain to account about it. The boatfwain told him, it was not his 
fault, he could not help the leakage of tar, and in that warm cli¬ 
mate it would run. The captain told him, he*would make him pre¬ 
vent it, and then took an end of a rope, and beat him in a 
mod unmerciful manner, in fo much that he did not recover it 
for fome weeks.—Another inftance was one John Coffee, who 
went out as an afliftant to the furgeon, was taken ill with the 
diforder that generally prevails with the White people; it gene¬ 
rally feizes them like as people are ftized with an ague, a fleepi— 
nefs and heavinefs about them, and not coring to move out of the 
way, and (bon after a fwelling of the legs takes place, fo that it 
becomes painful for them even to (land or walk, which has been 
often conftrued into idlenefs, and that if they would exert them- 
felves they would foon get well, and in order to make them, he 
has repeatecly beat them with a rope’s end, which 1 e did this 
John Coffee two or three times; at laft the poor fellow could not 
fland; the captain infilled upon it he would make him, and ac¬ 
cordingly called one of the hands, whether it was the boatfwain 
or no I cannot fay, and ordered him to feize him up to the (hrouds 
abaft, on the (larboard fide; which being done, and after being 
fome time in that pofition (a few minutes) he begged, for God’s 
fake, the captain to fhoot him, to put him out of pain. The 
captain told him, in a molt brutifh manner, “ No ! no I do you 
think I’ll be hanged for you.” He repeatedly requefled the 
captain either to let him down, or fhoot him, but he kept him 
there for near three hours, and then he was unloofed, and he Ly 
down on the deck on his bed that was handy by, and in about two 
hours, or fomewhere thereabouts, he expired. Thefe were the in- 
flances of cruelty particularly. 

How were the feamen generally off, in point of provifions ? 

When we firfl left Liverpool, we came to an allowance of fotfr 
pounds of bread a week, and one pound of fait beef a dav, with 
a proportion of potatoes boiled for the (hip’s company; fo that 
upon the outward-bound paffage we made it out tolerable well ; 
but the potatoes being gone juft about as we arrived on the coaft, 
we had nothing in lieu of them; in confequence of which we it a little (harp, and in order to make up for that, when we 
came to an anchor, we ufed to catch cat-fifh; by which means 
we made it out as well as might be expeded; the captain feeing 
we made it out fo well, foibade the cook to let us boil any 
more, and ordered them to be thrown overboard; in confequence 


[ io6 ] 

cl which we had nothing but four pounds of bread a week, and 
the pound of fait beef a day ; the beef when boiled, and the bones 
taken out of it, was Icarcely more than five or fix ounces to each 
man’s {hare; lb that we found it rather hard, and requelled the 
captain to allow us half a pound of bread a week more, which 
he refuled to do;—but I would make an obfervation with refpedt 
to diet; we ufed to have llock-filh once a week, chiefly during 
the voyage to the Well Indies, which we ufed to have with a 
little vinegar only;—there is one matter I have omitted, which 
is, that during the greater part of the outward bound paflage we 
ufed to have oatmeal boiled thick, called burgou, for breakfaft, 
and a little fait in it, which made it a comfortable meal; and, 
I believe, at Ibme certain times we were lb highly favoured as to 
get a little butter. 

Did you ever refide in America ? 

Yes; both at Bolton and New York, from the year 1774. till 
l? 8 3- 

Had they any Negro Slaves in that part of America P 

Yes; a great many, and free Blacks; I Ihould fuppofe one 
half of the inhabitants were Black people. 

What did you there obfcrve concerning the general treatment 
of Negro Slaves ? 

They were treated very well in general, equal to our fervants 
at home. 

Did you learn any thing concerning the keeping up of their 
flock of Slaves without frelh importations from Africa ? 

There never was an importation whilll 1 was there; during the 
time I was at Bolton there was none; neither was there while 1 
refided at New York, which was the greateft part of the war. 

• Did the numbers decreafe under thefe circumltances ? 

I do not think they did, for you fee the young Black children 
running about the ilreets in great plenty, the fame as our White 
children at home; theiefore I infer, that they did not decreafe 
and that population was kept up. * 

Do you know whether there is a driver to every gang of Slaves 
employed in the cultivation of the land in that part of America 
in which you have refided, and what is the ordinary mode of cor¬ 
rection for them, or for the domeftic Slaves ? 

E e 


[ io 7 1 

With refped to a driver, I never heard or faw fuch a thing in 
America; with refpeit to the ordinary puniffiment of the Negro 
Slaves, they have transferred them from one to another (to fuch j 

matters as they fliould like themfelves, which they have been at 
liberty to choofe), for they never found beating anfwer. 

Were you paid any advance money on the (hip’s failing from 
Liverpool ? 

Yes; two months. 

.Was this accounted for in Weft India currency on your arrival 
in the Weft Indies ? 

In Weft India currency. 

Do you know whether Captain Saltcraig was difcharged by his 
owners for drunkennefs and bad condudt ? 

I do not know ; becaufe I foon left Liverpool, and came up to 
London; but I would obferve that Mr. Rice, one of the owners 
and (hip’s hulband to the Firm, came to me at three different times, 
requeuing that I would remain in the fervice, and that they would ( 

promote me the firft vacancy that offered as a mate of one of the 
(hips. I told him, the treatment I had received myfelf, and the 
manner in which the (hip’s company in general were treated, and 
that it deterred me from going on the coaft any more, and not 
only fo, but I did not like the traffic. When he faw he could not 
prevail with me, he did not call again, but at the fame time he 
affured me that Captain Saltcraig (hould be prevented in future 
from ufing the (liip’s company in fuch a manner as had been re- 
prefented to him j which I made a point of telling the owners 

It what (ituation was you in that (hip? 

As cooper. 

Are Piccinini Sifters and Wappoa diftindt dates? 

I do not know. 

Do you know whether they were in a ftate of hoftility at that 
time againft each other? 

I never heard that they were. 

Did not you ftate that Ben Johnfon was fold for having kid- t 

napped the girl ? 

I* did. 



[ i°8 ] 

Did you ever know families fold on account of witchcraft ? 

Noj I never heard of fuch a thing as witchcraft while on the 

Had you any landfmen on board your (hip? 

Yesj I believe upwards of one half. 

Did you ever eat any of the horfe-beans yourfelf ? 

Yes; many a time, and thought it a moft excellent mefs. 

In what fituation was you when you refided at Bofton and New 

I went out to Bofton in his Majefty’s fhip Prefton as cooper 
of the (hip, under admiral Graves, at New York.'—I was as cooper 
in the fame fhip under commodore Hotham. 

At Bofton, do not the White people cultivate the land as well as 
the Negroes ? 

Yes j they do, and indifcriminately work together—the reafon of 
my having an opportunity to make thofe obfervations fo particular 
was, that on my arrival at Bofton I was appointed to conduct the 
brewery and cooperage for his Majefty’s fleet, and afterwards with 
commodore Hotham I was appointed as fuperintendant of the 
brewery, cooperage, and bakery, and was difcharged from the fliip, 
and remained in that fituation on fhore during the whole of the 
war, till the year 1783. 

Is an Englifh conftitution equal to the labour of the field at 
Bofton ? 

Yes j I think it is, and in any of the Northern Provinces. 

Provided there were a fufficient number of White people at 
Bofton, could the country be cultivated without Negroes at all ? 

Moft afluredly—without doubt. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mr. CLEMENT NOBLE called in; and examined. 

# How many voyages have you been to Africa, and in what capa¬ 
cities ? 

I have been nine voyages, two as a mate, and levcn as a 


[ !°9 ] 

Do you remember the voyage when you had Mr. Thomas 
Trotter as furgeon ? 



What year was it in ? 

We failed on the 3d of June 1783, and arrived at Liverpool in 
Auguft 1784. 

Had you any knowledge of Dr. Trotter before that time, or 
how did you become acquainted with him ? 

He was recommended by one of his friends to one of the 
owners of the (hip; I knew nothing of him before. 

According to your judgment, in his capacity of furgeon, was 
he attentive to the Slaves that were ill on board ? 

I thought him often very inattentive to his duty, and I thought 
likewife that he fpent a great deal too much time in drefs, and 
which I was often under the neceflity of telling him of, or re¬ 
proving him for. 


Do you remember the number of Slaves you purchafed in that 
voyage ? 

Yes; 638. 

Of what burthen was your fhip ? 

About three hundred tons. 

How many Slaves did you lofe ? 

Fifty-eight in the whole; nineteen on the coaft of Africa, 
thirty-three on the Middle Paflage, and fix in the harbour of 

Did you ufually bring as many in any voyages before ? 

We brought more the voyage befoi e that; we purchafed 666, 
and buried twenty-fix in the whole. 

How many feamen had you the voyage Mr. Trotter was with 
you, and how many did you lofe ? 

We had forty-nine in the whole, and loft three; one of thofe 
three died in the fmall-pox about ten days after we left Liverpool; 
another fell over-board in a boat, and was drowned, and the third 
died a natural death. . 


[ no ] 

Was that the average lofs in your voyage^ ? 

I think it was. 

Do you remember the circumftance of a dead man and a living 
one being found chained together in your (hip ? 

No; I never remember any circumftance of the fort, neither 
that voyage nor no other that ever I was concerned in to the 

Did you ever know any Slaves fuffocated from the tarpaulins 
being laid over the gratings through ignorance or inattention ? 

I never did ; it is impoflible a circumftance of the fort could 
happen, for the Slaves are always ready enough to call to the peo¬ 
ple on deck to put the tarpaulin either up or down, as they find 
themfelves either too hot or too cold. 

How is the rain prevented from getting into the rooms through 
the gratings ? 

By a tarpaulin or awning fpread ten or twelve feet above the 
deck, from mail to maft, in imitation of the roof of a houfe. 

Have you been at Cape Le Hou ? And by whom is the trade to 
that part carried on ? 

I have been feveral times there ; the trade is chiefly carried on 
there by the Dutch; Englilh and French (hips only flop a day or 
two, or perhaps a week fometimes. 

Do you believe any Slave can be taken off the Coaft that is not 
regularly fold under the laws of the country ? 

I believe not. I never knew an inftance of the (ort. 

Do you believe any Slaves could be kidnapped with impunity on 
the Gold Coaft ? 

I really believe not. 

Do you remember a man Slave on board your (hip attempting to 
deftroy himfelf ? 

I do; and I really believe the man was perfedtly mad, and I am 
fure fo too. 

Do you remember any of your Slaves falling overboard, or wil¬ 
fully throwing themfelves overboard ? 

• I have known feveral inftances of their falling overboard by ac¬ 
cident, but generally picked up again. 



[ III ] 

Did you Iofe any in that voyage in which Mr. Trotter was with 

you, by their falling over-board, or by their throwing themfelves 
over-board ? 

I only recoiled: one, and he was fubjed to fits, and fell out of the 
fore-chains in a fit, and was drowned. 

Do you remember a woman repeatedly jumping over-board, and 

did you punifii her for it ? 

I remember a woman that was infane, and that was very trou¬ 
bled me, and the did jump over-board once or oftener, I believe I 
ordered her to be confined, to prevent her from jumping over-board 
again, but pummed her no other ways. 

Do you remember that woman dying ? 

I do not recoiled whether the did or not. 

Had you ever any Slave that died on board in confequence of 
the corredion they had received in any of your voyages ? 

I never had. G 

you one voyag< 

Were your officers and feamen who failed with 
always ready and defirous to fail with you again ? 

. A The y alw , a y s were > or at leaft in general. 1 hardly ever knew 
mltance to the contrary. 

Do you remember particularly flogging one of your feamen tht 
voyage that Mr. Trotter failed with you ? 

. * do > 1 him for abufing the Slaves, and being vert 

mfolent to myfelf—I believe it was the only time that any of the 
feamen were flogged that voyage. y 

Do you remember what time 

I generally failed in the evening 
chiefly on the winds. 

you generally failed from the 
or morning, but that depends 

Africa ? y ° U behCVe Mf * Tr ° tter was ever afllore on the Coaft of 
I believe not. 

When Mr. Trotter returned, did he 
occurrences of the voyage, or with your 
I do not know that he did. 

appear diflatisfied with 
treatment of him ? 



[ 112 ] 

Do you remember in any of your voyages having a number of 
parroquets on board, and how long fince ? 

1 d t ° ren ? e . mber if was in ^e year 1774, rather fooner in the 
year than this month—I do not exadtly remember the time. 

In what year was Mr. Trotter with you in your voyage? 

We failed in 1773, and came back in 1774. 

th= D vopge alE b "? any aCCMent haPPeni " g ‘° * he parr °’ UetS !n 

remember they were all killed in one night—When I 
enquired the next morning how it happened, I found they had 

5 f e, \ kll ‘ ed by l ® lack ™ an belonging to the {hip (he was not a 
Slave) s he alfo had told fome of the people that he would do as 

f ° r the next night—I afked him if he had faid fo? 
and he faid, yes with all the infolence in the world.—I imme¬ 
diately ordered the people to confine him, and then held a conful- 
tauon with my officers what we ffiould do with him, and we all 
thought it was unfafe to keep him below; I therefore fent him 
to the mart head, where he was kept for about two days—At the 
end of two days he fent word down by fome of the people, that 
he was very Sorry for what had happened, and hoped that I would 
let him come down—I immediately ordered him to be brought 
down, and let out of irons, and he came on the quarter deck to 
me, and begged pardon for what he had done, and hoped that I 
woffid excufehim; and I told him to go forward abouf his bufi- 
nefs ; but all the remainder of the paffage I took good care to 
keep ^ cabin door fall during the night—he was a very trouble¬ 
some turbulent man, and after we arrived at Kingfton, he was 
caged almoft every night, until he went off the Ifland—he fent 
Somebody to me every morning when he was confined, for money 
to reieafe him he never blamed me after for confining him at the 
bU fi £ ^. man y o f t he failors that it was very fortunate 

fon, ld h h d COnfined . hl "? m that manner, otherwife he was Sure he 
ffiould have murdered me. for his refolution was then firmly 

£ 1 r j ” \ * a^auiuuou was men nrmJvr 

fixed.-I do not rccolleft that ever I war called to any acconntfor 
inhumanity, nor never lince I was matter had any trouble with 
my failors, fnch as then employing anomies, or any thing of that 
fort ; and the very fame man (I mean the White failor menri- 

oned before) came home with me afterwards from Jamaica and 
behaved very well. J 9 

Did you often receive Slaves in the night ? 
Not often } but we did every now and then. 


[ 1! 3 3 

Why did you receive them in the night ? 

That the other captains fhould not fee them come on board. 
I always judged that was the caufe, for the tiaders wiffied to 
keep on gcod terms with all the captains, which they perhaps 
could not do, if they carried all the trade to one ikip. 

Do you remember receiving three men that were hiking in the 
offing ? 

I do not remember it; but I have frequently feen them taken 
out of canoes and fold. 

Were they Freemen or Slaves ? 

Slaves to be fure; the greater part of the people that paddle th& 
canoes and go a fitting are Slaves. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Lurice) io° die Maii 179^* 

M R. CLEMENT NOBLE called in, and further examined. 

You have mentioned that the Slave who deftroyed himfelf was 
infane; was he fo when brought on board ? 

He did not appear fo, otherways I ffiould not have bought 


How foon did you perceive any marks of infanity? 

In a very few days after he came on board; I cannot fpeak exactly 
to the time. 

What were the firft fymptoms of his infanity which you per¬ 
ceived? _ 

He (tormed and made a great noife, worked with his hands, 
and threw himfelf about in an extraordinary manner, and (hewed 
every fign of being mad. 

Do you know whether or not he refufed fuftenance ? 

I believe he did, in general. 


t 114 ] 

Had you yourfelf any converlation with him ? 

No } except talking to him at times, when he Teemed to be 
rather better than at other times. 

What account did he then give of the reafons for his violent 
conduit ? 

He gave no reafon at all; I could feldom get him to fpeak. 

Did you talk to him through the means of an interpreter ? 

I did. 

Had you any converfation with Dr. Trotter refpeding him, on 
his firft appearing to you to be inlane ? 

I have no doubt bat what I had j but I cannot recoiled the 


Do you, or do you not, recoiled Dr. Trotter’s being fent for 
to vilit fome lick perfons on board other fhips, whilft you were on 
the Coaft of Africa ? 

I think he was. 

Was any particular treatment adopted for the recovery of the 
lick Slaves on your arrival in the Welt Indies? 

We generally purchale all the vegetables we can on our firft ar¬ 
rival, fuch as limes, oranges, and any thing of that fort. 

Did your Slaves foon after their arrival, recover their health ? 

They did mend very faft, and do in general. 

How long were you on the Coaft of Africa in this voyage ? 

We were nine months and eight days from onr firft arrival until 
the time we left the coaft. 

Was there a conftant intercourfe between your fhip and the 
brokers on the Ihore ? 

I think there was in general, if the badnefs of the fea did not 
prevent them from coming off. 

Had you any children on board your (hip ? 

I think we had feveral. 

Were they brought on board with or without their parents, or 
other near relations ? 

G g Always 

[ ] 

Always with their mothers, that is, young children: I am 
/peaking of children at the bread. 

Do you know whether or not perfons of the condition of Slaves, 
on the Coad of Africa, are liable to be fold to the Slave Ships, 
without having been convidted of any crime ? 

I believe they are. 

What reafon have you for believing fo? 

I always underdood that they had a right, according to the 
laws of their country, to do what they pleafed with their own 

When Slaves were offered you for fale, did you make any 
enquiry to afcertain whether or not they were the property of the 
perfon who offered them to you for purchafe ? 

I did notj they are not in general the property of thofc that 
bring them on board; thofe that fell them to us only adt as 

What enquiry did you ufe to make refpedting the manner in 
which thefe brokers had come by them ? 

None; we never look upon it there is any occafion to enquire; 
we always fuppofe, and do not doubt but they have a right to fell 
them. 6 

You have mentioned a woman who was infane; how foon after 
her arrival on board did you perceive any marks of infanity in 

I do not recoiled!. 

Are indances of Slaves falling overboard frequent on board 
Guinea fhips ? 

Not very frequent; it happens every now and then. 

You have mentioned your receiving Slaves in the night; is 
it ufual for Guinea fhips to receive them after dark ? 

It does not very frequently happen. 

Are you at prefent engaged in the African Trade ? 

1 am not. 

How long have you quitted that line of life ? 

It is better than four years fince 1 was at fea. 


[ i*6 ] 

Did Dr. Trotter ever apply to you to take him again as furgeon 
m any fubfequent voyage ? 

The fhip was laid up when we came home, or elfe I do not doubt 
but what he would j I had no realon to think any thing to the 

Had you any reafon to believe he would ? 

I believe there was nothing ever laid upon the fubjedt by either 
one or the other of us. 


Did you ever confult Dr. Trotter refpefting the caufe of the 
infanity of the man mentioned in a former part of your evi¬ 
dence ? 

I have not a doubt but what I did; but I cannot now recoiled! 
the particulars. 

Do the Slaves in general appear much dejedted when firft brought 
on board ? 

Some of them do; but they in general foon mend of that, 
and are in general in very good fpirits during the time they are 
on board the fhips. 

Have you known repeated inftances of their refuting fuftenance', 
and of compulfive methods being ufed to oblige them to take 

We now and then met with fulky ones that would not eat 
without force, and we then endeavoured to perfuade them ; and 
if they would not do it with perfualion, to force them to it. 

Did you ever go below when all the Slaves were in their 
rooms ? 

Yes; very frequently. 

Had the Slaves fufficient room, and were they tolerably well 
off as to comfort in other refpefls ? 

Yes; they had room enough to lay down, and were as com¬ 
fortably as any body could expedl on board a fhip. 

Could you walk about among!! them without treading upon 
them ? 

Yes, certainly j it is done every night by the officers ; I mean 
after they go to reft. 


[ ”7 ] 

Had your fliip platforms ? 

She had} and all the ftiips that ever I was in had. 

Was the heat oppreflive, and the air very foul ? 

It was much hotter at fome times than others; that depends 
chiefly on the weather; it is fure to be very warm when calm. 

The enquiry is not concerning the heat of the climate, but 
whether the air was not very foul and offenfive from the number 
of human bodies confined in a fmall place ? 

I never found any bad effects from the air. 

Queftion repeated. 

It is fure that the air cannot be fo good as upon deck. 

Queftion repeated. 

It is rather foul and offenfive, but more fo in calm weather 
than at other times. 

To what voyage have you been referring, in what you have faid 
receding the ftate of the fliip between decks, &c. ? 

To the voyage that Dcdor Trotter was with me. 

How many Slaves did you carry in the men’s room in that 
voyage ? 

I do not knowj we generally divide them as equally as we can 
fore and aft in the fliip. 

Cannot you ftate with any tolerable precifion what number of 
men you carried in the men’s room ? 

I cannot; I ftiould fuppofe, from the number on board, that 
there muft have been fomething ftiort of 300 in the men’s 

What proportion of .your cargo was males ? 

I cannot exadly fay; but I ftiould fuppofe about two thirds 
males, and one third females. 

What number of boys had you on board ? 

I do not recoiled: j we in general reckon them in our account as 
males and females without diftinguiftiing} we had a great num¬ 
ber of both boys and girls. 



[ ”8 ] 

What was the length and breadth of your men’s room ? 

The breadth I think was about 26 foot, but the length J do 
not remember. 

How many rows of Slaves were there in breadth ? 

Four j I mean on the decks j and one on each of the plat¬ 

Were the male Slaves flowed on their backs or on their fides in 
the night ? 

On their backs or fides, juft as they chofe to lie. 

Whofe bufinefs was it to flow them ? 

The chief mate and boatfwain generally flow them in the men’s 

What fpace had each Slave to lie in ? 

I do not know the fpace ; I never meafured it, or made any 
calculation of what room they had j they had always plenty of 
room to lay down in, and had they had three times as much room 
they would lay all jammed clofe up together j they always do that 
before the room is half full. 

What interval was there in the middle way between the two 
rows of Slaves ? 

In fome places more, and in fome lefs, according to the lengths 
of the Slaves. 

Will you ftate how large it was to the beft of your recollec¬ 
tion ? 

In fome places perhaps a foot, in fome more, and in fome lefs. 
Sometimes, when the weather is cold or cool, they will lay as near 
the fide as they can, and when it is warm, they croud more under 
the gratings. 

In what manner were your Slaves fold on your arrival in the 
Weft Indies ? 

The men are on the main deck, and the women all on the 
quarter deck ; and the gentlemen that come on board to purchafe 
come in at the gangway, betwixt thofe places, and there they re¬ 
main until the fale is opened, at which time they rufh in fore and 
aft, and fuit themfelves as well as they can, clapping their tallies 
on whatever they mean to take. 

H h 


[ u 9 J 

Is this the common way of felling a cargo of Slaves by 

I believe it is in Jamaica, in other iflarids it is different. 

Do you remember the Slaves being in great diftrefs, and making 
grievous outcries on the fale by fcramble in this particular 

voyage ? 

1 do ; the caufe of it is, becaufe they are parting ; it is a general 
cry, and a noife through the whole fhip ; but more particularly fo 
with fome that think they are going to be parted from their huf- 
bands, wives, mothers, children, &c.; but the planters or gentle¬ 
men that come to purchafe them are always very particular in mak¬ 
ing txchanges, fo that hufbands, wives, mothers, and children, 
and even acquaintances, fhall go together. I never knew it other- 

Do the men Slaves take exercife during the Middle PafTage ? 

They do. 

Of what fort ? 

We have a drum, which they beat, and the others jump or 
dance to it, as well as the nature of their fituation will admit of. 

What is the nature of their fituation to which you refer ? 

The flout men are all in irons, a right leg and a left, and 
likewife their hands the fame. 

Is there not alfo a chain that connects them all together, which 
is fattened to the deck ? 

There is a chain which fattens the greatefl part of them to the 
deck, a few days before you leave the coaft, and a few days 
after; then thofe chains are taken away, and a great number of the 
Slaves let out of irons. 

Are the Slaves in the fituation before referred to, willing and 
difpofed to dance ? 

They are always very ready, and very fond of dancing, except 
a few fulky ones ; but in general there are very few of them. 

Are any means ufed to compel them to dance, when fulky ? 

The mate or people that are amongft them endeavour to per- 
fuade them, and if they will not, they let them do as they 
pleafe. 1 



[' 120 ] 

Can you take upon you to fay pofitively, that one Teaman 

1 ' a . • J J r VM 1 IfV v> iAJai lcuraan 

only was Hogged during your voyage ? 

1 do not recoiled: any other, and that verv Teamen 

Toon, otherwiTe I would have taken him. 

Were you Tupplied with rice, or corn, from the natives whilft 

on the coaft oT Africa ? 
I was. 

Can you ftate in what manner your cargo of Slaves was dis¬ 

tributed on board your (hip ? 

I cannot recoiled how they were divided as to numbers, but 
we contrive to divide them To as one room fliould not be more 
thronged than another. 

Were they diftributed as the cargo ufrially is on board Guinea 
lhips r 

. The y were, for any thing that I know; I always underftood that 

it was the rule on board Guinea fhips to diftribute them equally 
fore and aft * * 

In what other part of 'the fhip, befides the men’s room, had 
you any men Slaves flowed ? 

In a room called the boys room, adjoining to the men’s room j 
there are generally Tome of the men amongft the boys. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


That the Examination of Mr. Robert Norris, the Rev. Tho¬ 
mas Clarkfon, Dodor Thomas Trotter, Mr. William Dove, 
and Mr. Clement Noble, be reported to the Houfe. 

N° 2. 


appointed for the 


Reported nth May i79°* 

Witneffes Examined, 




[ 121 3 



Veneris f 21 ° die Maii 1790. 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed to take 
the Examination of Witnefles on the Slave Trade. 

Luna, io° die Maii 1790. 

Isaac PARKER, (hip-keeper on board the Melampus 
frigate in ordinary, called in; and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa ? 


How often, when, and in what (hip ? 

Three times; once in the Black Joke, in the year 1764, cap¬ 
tain Jofeph Pollard, from Liverpool, to the river Gambia: we 
(laved at Culloreen. 

How were the Slaves treated in that voyage ? 

The Slaves were treated very well, except one child that was 
ufed ill. 


[ 122 - ] 

No ; he died off the ifland of St. Jago, and captain Marfhall, 
who was the chief mate, fucceeded to the command. 

Did captain Marfhall behave as well to the Slaves as captain 
Pollard had done ? 


When you fpeak of the Slaves being well treated, do you fpeak 
then of captain Pollard’s, or of captain Marfhall’s behaviour ? 

Of captain Pollard’s. 

Was the child to which you refer ill treated by captain Pollard 
or captain Marfhall ? 

By captain Marfhall. 

What were the circumftances of this child’s ill treatment ? 

The child took fulk and would not eat. 

What followed P 

The captain took the child up in his hand, and flogged it with' 
the cat. 

Did he fay any thing when he did fo ? 

Yes ; he faid, “ Damn you, I will make you eat, or I will 
** kill you.” 

Could the Slaves who were on board fee the captain while he 
Was flogging the child ? 

Yes i they could. 

How could they fee him, and how did they behave on the oc- 
calion ? 

They faw it through the barricade, looking through the cre¬ 
vices } they made a great murmuring, and did not feem to like 

Do you remember any thing more about this child? 

Yes ; the child had fwelled feet; the captain deiired the cook 
to put on fome water to beat, to fee if he could abate the fwel- 
ling, and it was done. He then ordered the child’s feet to be put 
into the water, and the cook putting his finger into the water, 
faid, “ Sir, it is too hot.” The captain faid, “ Damn it, nevermind 
it, put the feet inand fo doing, the {kin and nails came off, and 
he got fome fweet oil and cloths and wrapped round the feet in 

1 order 

[ 123 ] 

order to take the fire out of them ; and I myfelf bathed the feet 
with oil, and wrapped the cloths around ; and laying the child on 
the quarter deck m the afternoon at mefs time, I gave the child 
Jome victuals, but it would not eat; the captain took the child 
up again and flogged it, and faid, “ Damn you, I will make you 
eat, and (o he continued in that way for four or five days at 
mefs time, when the child would not eat, and flogged it, and he 
tied a log o( mango, eighteen or twenty inches long, and about 
twelve or thirteen poU nd weight, to the child by a firing round its 
neck. The laft time he took the child up and flogged it, and let 

drop out of his hands, “ Damn you (fays he) I will make you 
eat, or 1 will be the death of you ;" and in three quarters of an 
hour after that the child died. He would not fuffer any of the 
people that were on the quarter deck to heave the child over¬ 
board, but he called the mother of the child to heave it over¬ 
board. She was not willing to do fo, and I think he flogged her • 

k Ut I 1 f.™ fure * hat J e beat her in feme way for refufing to throw 
the chi J overboard; at laft he made her take the child up, and 
Ihe took ,t in her hand, and went to the (hip's fide, holding her 
head on one fide, becaufe (he would not fee the child go out of 
her hand, and (he dropped the child overboard. She feemed to be 
very (orry, and cried for feverai hours. 

For what purpofe did the captain tie the child to the loo- ? 

He did it for fpite, becaufe the child would not eat; for a pu- 
nuhment to it. t 

(halT? rC thC SIaVCS WeI1 treated in general by captain Mar- 

No; they were not; he pinched them in provifions and water, 
while there was plenty in the (hip. 

What port did you fail from in your fecond voyage, in what 
(hip, when, and to what part of the Coaft ? 7 g 

OU r C^rr, 0 h;year h ,76^ tham ’ ° ar B e ^ *° 

Did you leave the (hip on the Coaft ? 

Yes; I did. 

For what reafon ? 

For want of provifions. 



[ i2 4 ] 

Where did you leave the Chip, and what became of you after¬ 
wards ? 

I left the {hip upon the Bar; the fhip was homeward bound, 
but ftill lay windbound ; I went afhore with the furgeon of the 
fhip to purchafe a few Slaves with the goods we had left. 

What do you mean by homeward bound ? 

From the Coaft of Africa to the Weft Indies. 

What became of you after you left the fhip ? 

1 went along with the furgeon in the boat to New Town; I 
followed the furgeon up to Dick Ebro’s, who was a king’s fon in 
that place ;—I faid to Dick Ebro, “ You know captain Colly,— 
** you know that he ufes his people very ill, and I have run away 
•* from him and he locked me up in one of his rooms for three 
days, till the fhip was gone, then 1 came out and employed my- 
felf in fifhing, and cleaning their mufkets, cutlafles, and blunder- 
buffes j I was with them five months. 

Did you ever go up the river whilft you remained with Dick 
Ebro ? 


Upon what occafion; ftate the particulars as well as you can 
recollect ? 

He afked me firft, 4 ‘ Parker, will you go to war with me ?’’ I 
faid, “ I did not care;” upon that the canoes were fitted out 
with ammunition, cutlafles, piftols, powder and ball, and two 
guns, which were three-pounders, fixed upon a block of wood ; one 
in the canoe’s ftern, and one in the bow; then we paddled up the 
rivers in the day- time, and when he knew himfelf nigh a village, 
then he lay under the bufh till night} when night came we put 
the canoes afhore, leaving two or three Negroes in each canoe, the 
reft flying up to the village, taking hold of every one we could fee; 
and as we took them we handcuffed them, and brought them 
down to the canoe; after we had done fo, we quitted the place, 
and went farther up the river, and fo during the fecond time; 
and we got to the amount, to the beft of my knowledge, of 45 
Slaves that time.—Then we came away to New Town, and put 
our Slaves into different houfes, fending word to the captains of 
the fhipping, that if they would come, we had got fome Slaves for 
them, and fo faying, the Slaves were divided amongft the different 
fhips. About a week or a fortnight after that, we went a fecond 
time, and went higher up the river; to the beft of my know¬ 

[ I2 5 I 

ledge, we were gone eight or nine days plundering of other vil¬ 
lages; we got much the fame as we did the firft, and brought 
them down to New Town, and put them in different houfes as 
before, and divided them among the captains, when news was 
given them as before. 

Had the people up the river made an attack on Dick Ebro ? 

1 never heard or faw a °y fach thing, either by land or 

Muft not you have feen it if they had made any fuch attack ? 

' es 5: I muft have feen it, for when I was not a fiftiing I was 
about the woods fhootmg of parrots, and I never faw any diftur- 
bance amongft the inhabitants. 

Did you carry up any goods with you in the canoes ? 
No ; we did not carry any of any kind. 

N V r,^r War y kh , thefe P e °P le before he went up the river? 
Not that I know of; I never faw him at war with any body be¬ 
fore that time, neither he nor any perfon in the place. 

tions ? S therC 3 Want ° f Slaves before E bro went on thefe expedi- 

I believe there was; Slaves were very flack in the back coun¬ 
tries at that time. 

Yes y ° U takC 3ny children in thefe expeditions ? 

Were their parents along with them ? 
inthehouiL'. 00k ma °' WOman ’ andchild ' as “Old catch them 

. ? d 7°“ takc a “y particular care to fell the parents and children 
to the fame perfon, to prevent their being feparated ? 

they were divided, fome in one Ihip, and fome in 
mo°,'he"’. CXCeP " ng UCtinS ChWren ’ Wh ° 'hrir 

me^ra„dtie'ndsV irCUmftanCeS M diff —yone 
vo“ g r ‘° difeent pe ° p,e in different flli P s - in lalki "£ about 

K k 



[ 126 ] 

Do you remember how many men you loft in your firft voyage 
in the Black Joke ? 

Yes; eight. 

What was the number of your crew, as well as you can recoi¬ 
led ? . 

I am fure there were thirteen in number, and that eight of 
them died ; we had five left, the captain, three White men, and 
one Black. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Martis, ii° die Maii 179a. 

IsAAC PARKER, called in; and further examined. 

What was your birth on board the Black Joke ? 

I was a feaman before the malt. 


Did you go the whole voyage in the Black Joke ? 

Yes; I did. 

What month did you leave Liverpool outward bound ? 

I cannot recoiled the month. 

Do you recoiled the month when you arrived in the river 
Gambia ? 

No j I cannot fay I do. 

How many months were you on the voyage, out and home? 
Nine months. 

Where did you fell your cargo of Slaves ? 

At Dominica. 

What part of Africa did you fail from with your cargo of 
Slaves ? 

From the river Gambia. 

8 How 

[ I 

How many Slaves had you on board ? 


What was the tonnage of your veffel, the Black Joke ? 
Seventy-five or feventy-fix tons. 

Was this a fhip, brig, fnowy or floop ? 

A brig. 

What land did you firft make in the Weft Indies ? 


How long was it before you made the land that Captain Pol¬ 
lard died ? 

I cannot juftly fay; but it was under a month or five weeks. 

How long was you on your paffage from Africa to Barba¬ 
does ? 

To the beft of my remembrance feven weeks. 

Did you make any land between Africa and Barbadoes ? 

Yes j we did—the lfland of Jago. 

How foon after you left Africa ? 

I cannot juftly fay. 

Do you think it was a month or fix weeks ? 

I cannot fay whether it was a month or fix weeks; but I be¬ 
lieve it was about three weeks. 

What age was the child that Captain Marfhall treated fo ill, to 
the beft of your judgment ? 

Nine months, as near as I could guefs. 

How many days running did Captain Marfhall flog the child, 
after it had loft the nails on its toes by being fcalded with hot 
water 2 

Four days, to the beft of my remembrance. 

What was the meat that they offered to the child which it took, 
fulk at, and would not eat ?. 

Rice mixed with palm oil. 


[ 1 

Would not Captain Marfhall let the child fuck its mother ? 

Yes he would, if the child would have fucked. 

Is it ufual on board Guinea fhips to feed children with rice and 
palm oil, as far as you know ? 

It is ; there is no other food but that, and beans, and yams. 

Is it common for Negro children of nine months old to refufe 
the mother’s bread ? 

I cannot fay; I never faw any one but that. 

How many days was the log of wood of twelve or thirteen 
pounds weight, tied round the child’s neck by Captain Marfhall, 
before the child died ? 

Four days. 

Was it before or after the child’s fkin and toe nails were 
fcalded off its feet by the Captain ? 

After it was fcalded. 

What month in the year 1765, in your fecond voyage in the 
Latham, Captain Colly, did you leave Liverpool, outward-bound ? 

I cannot juftly fay ; I do not remember. 

Do you remember what month it was that you left Africa that 
voyage ? 

Noj I do not recollect. 

Was it in the winter or fpring of 1765', that you left Liver¬ 
pool ? 

To the beft of my remembrance it was in the fall of the year. 

Was it in Odtober or November, or in what month ? 

I do not know; I cannot rightly fay the month, but it might 
be about that time. 

Do you recoiled! the time when you returned to England that 
voyage ? 

It was in June or July 1766. 

How long was you upon the coaft in the Latham before you 
ran away from her ? 

Nine months. 


[r 1 

Recollca, if you can, whether it was September, Oaober, or 

"tss ss ssr-®“»- *■*- 

where thereabouts. 

When you ran away from the Latham, had (he purchafed her 
complement of Slaves, and was fhe ready to fail. 

Yes; fhe was. 

fZ :X’r miXand So* not know how 

many Slaves he purchafed. 

Whofe gooda were they that you and the furgeon carried with 

vou from the fhip to buy Slaves with . 

^ The merchants that owned the fhip, as far as I now. 

Do you mean the Liverpool owners ? 


Did Captain Colly give you and the furgeon thofe goods to go 
an Yes 1 - 1 hedTd ; he ordered them into the boat to purchafe Slaves. 

Who went with you befides the furgeon ? 
Nobody but the boat’s crew. 

How many did they confifl of? 


What became of the furgeon ? • 

He went about the town to look for Slaves. 

Do you know how many Slaves the furgeon bought i 
I cannot tell whether he purchafed any ; I was concealed in a 


How long did the fhip remain upon the coaft after you left her ? 
Three days. 

Where did Dick Ebro live ? 

In a place called New Town. 

r ; Had 

[ I 3° 3 

Had you known him before that voyage ? 

No ■, that was the firft voyage I was there. 

Do you recoiled the names of the villages you went to make 
war againft ? 

No, I do not; I never heard any name for them. 

How far up the river were thole villages, do you think? 

Betwixt twenty and thirty miles. 

What was your ufual employment while you ftaid with Dick 
Ebro ? 

Going a filhing, and cleaning their arms, piftols, and blunder- 

Was there not a war between the people of the New Town and 
the Old Town when you was there ? 

I do not recoiled whether there was or not 

How long was you with Dick Ebro ? 

Five months. 


Did you ever know Dick Ebro called by any other name ? 

No; I never did. 

Did you never hear him called by the name of Duke Ephraim ? 

No; that was another trader. 

Who was that trader ? 

Another that lived in the fame village of New Town, a great 
trader the fame as Dick Ebro. 

Was there never any war or difputes between Duke Ephraim 
and Dick Ebro, while you was there ? 

I never faw any difpute in the villages, nor amongft them. 

What was the occafion of your quitting Dick Ebro ? 

I wanted to get home to England, and I did not chufe to live 
there all the days of my life. 

What is the diftance between the New Town and the Old 
Town of Calabar ? 


f * 3 * ] 

As nigh as I can guefs, about three or four miles; four 
miles or better I believe. 

Were the inhabitants of the two towns friends while you was 
there ? 

They were, to the bed of my remembrance; I do not remember 
any disturbance amongll them. 

In what veflel did you come to England from Calabar, when 
you quitted Ebro ? 

In the Dalrymple, Captain Ellifon. 

What port did you come to ? 

To Barbadoes firft. 

Had you a cargo of Slaves on board ? 

Yes; and we fold them at Antigua. 

What port in England did you arrive at ? 

I did not come home in that ihip. 

What fhip did you go into then ? 

In a {loop called the O’Hara, to Senegal; I went back in her 
to Africa, for I had no wages with Captain Ellifon. 

When did you return to England ? 

I cannot recoiled the month rightly; but it was in the fum- 
mer of 1766. 

What way of life have you been in ever fince that ? 

In the coalling trade fome time, and fome time in His Majelly’s 

When did you enter into His Majelly’s fervice firft, after quit¬ 
ting the coafting trade, and in what Ihip ? 

In 1768, in the Endeavour bark; (he was rated as a man of war, 
and I went in her with Captain Cook round the world as boaV- 
fwain’s mate. 

What was the next Ihip you ferved in ? 

In the Monarch, a 74, Captain Jolhua Rowley, commander. 

What is your prefent employment ? 


[ *3* ] 

An extra man on board the Melampus frigate, in ordinary, in 
the fervice of the Ordnance. 

What fervice do you do on board in that capacity ? 

Wafhing and fcraping the fhip, and keeping her clean. 

By whom was you appointed to that birth on board the Me¬ 
lampus ? 

By the mafter attendant at Plymouth Dock. 

What is your pay for that ? 

Twenty-two (hillings and fix pence a month, the fame as on 
board a (hip in commiffion. 

Are you under the orders of the officers of the dock yard, or 
who elfe ? 

Under the mafter attendant and the commiffioner. 

Is Captain Marlhall dead or alive ? 

1 cannot tell. 

Did Captain Marfliall command any other (hip in the African 
Trade ? 

1 believe he did; I heard fo. 

Did you ever know that the captains of Guineamen have taken 
L any meafures among themfelves, or towards the natives, to force a 
trade in Slaves ? 


Do you know what is meant by the queftion ? 

I cannot fay I rightly do. 

Do you remember any inftance of captains of Guineamen making 
any • agreement refpe&ing the price which they would give for 
Steves ? 

Yes ; I do. 

Relate what you know of any fuch inftances ? 

They agreed among themfelves to lay under a fifty pound 
bond, if any captain fhould give more than another; fuch a certain 


[ J 33 ] 

Did the natives readily bring on board Slaves to fell at thofe 
prices r 

No j they did not. 

What did the captains then do ? 

They ufed to row guard at night time, to take the 
they approached, or palled the /hip. 

canoes as 

What did they do with thofe Negroes whom they took on 
board in that manner. 7 

They took them on board the different Ihips. 

How long did they keep them ? 

Till fuch time as they agreed to Have at the fame price as they 
formerly did; the old price. * 7 

Do you remember any thing about that price ? 

I cannot recollea what it is now, but I remember it ufed to be 
fo many bars j I think I am miftaken in the term, I believe it is 
coppers ; I believe bars is to the Windward Coaft. 

Will you explain what you mean by rowing guard ? 
topping of the Slaves that they /hould not get up to their 
towns, to prevent the traders from getting Slaves. 

Did you ever know the captains make prefents to the Black 
traders to induce them to bring Slaves ? 


Did you obferve the behaviour of thofe Slaves which you took 
out ot the villages up the river, when they were fold to the Enelilh 
captains r Mention what you remember of it ? b 

force 68--13 "^™" 8 an<1 Cryi ° S that thCy were taken away by 

Did you know Dick Ebro before you put yourfelf under his 
care r 

' Yes » 1 d ‘ d_ rty ? oJn e U P to his houfe twice a day, to fee after 
Slaves for the ihippmg. J 

Had Ebro any Slaves of his own ? 

Yes; he had a great number. 

M m 

How did he employ them ? 


[ *34 ] 

In cutting the wood, and fi filing—and going in his canoes up 
the country fometimes. 

How did he treat his Slaves ? 

He treated them very well—I never faw it otherwife. 

Do you recoiled!: whether Captain Colly behaved as well to his 
fhip’s crew, after his arrival on the Coaft, as he did during the 
voyage ? 

No; he did not. 

Do you recoiled! any particular inftance in which you thought 
° yourfelf ill ufed by Captain Colly ? 

Yes—by being kept ftiort of provifions—having nothing but 
fifti to live upon for four months, and nothing but palm oil with 
it, and fometimes not that—and when up in the country, having 
taken a yam off the coppers, he took it away from me, and told 
the mate to charge me one fhilling in the log book againft my 
wages—and not having more than four pounds of bread a week, 
and an allowance of fo much fifh for the mefs, which, when boiled, 
was fcarce fufficient for a meal—and the reft of the day we were 
forced to go without victuals. 

You have faid, ‘‘ That in your firft voyage in the year 1764, 
“ the Slaves were treated very well, except one child that was 
“ ufed ill,”—did you mean in that anfwer to fay, that they were 
well ufed during the whole of the voyage, or only during the life 
of Captain Pollard ? 

During the life of Captain Pollard only. 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies at any other times than you 
have already mentioned ? 


Did you ever fee there feamen lick, with fwelled feet, and beg¬ 
ging, for want of food and employment ? 

Yes ; I have feveral. 

Did you everaflc them from what fliips they came? 

Yes; I have. 

What anfwers did they make ? 

They have told me Guineamen ; but the fliips names I cannot 
remember. 12 




[ *3S ] 

Do you recoiled in what iflands you have feen thefe feamen al¬ 
luded to ? 

Yes—in Jamaica, Barbadoes, Antigua, and the Grenades. 

When you entered on board Captain Pollard s Ihip, did you 
know that part of your wages were to be paid you in the Weft 
Indies, in currency, and not in fterling ? 

No; I did not. 

Did you voluntarily enter on board that Ihip ? 

I did. 

Did you enter voluntarily on board Captain Colly’s fhip ? 

- Yes; I did. 

How came you to enter on board Captain Pollard s fhip ? 

I received a hurt on board a coafting veflel, and was obliged 
to quit her—-and I had taken a fancy to go upon the coaft of 

Did you ever know or hear of the people coming down from 
the villages, twenty or thirty miles up the river, to make war on 
Dick Ebro ? 

Not during the time that I was there, to the beft of my know¬ 

Had you heard of their having done fo before you was there ? 

I don’t remember that ever I did. 

What was the reafon of your leaving Captain Ellifon, in whole 
fhip you left the coaft of Guinea ? 

1 cannot recolleft the owner’s name of the fhip; but I left him 
becaufe he would not give me wages for the time I had been with 

By what means did you know that the captains of Slave fhips 
entered into bonds with each other refpe&ing the price they were 
to give for Slaves ? 

Becaufe 1 heard the captains fay fo; my own captain, and 
others too, being on board with one another. 

Can you name the captains who made prefents to the Black 
traders ? 

Yes 3 



[ 136 ] 

Yea; I can name one; Captain George Colly made them a pre- 
lent or fome pieces of cannon. 

Did you fee it done ? 

I did; and faw them landed. 

How long have you been from Plymouth ? 

A week laft Monday. 

What are you to have for coming here ? 

I do not know. 

Who gave you leave to come up ? 

Commiflioner Fanfhaw ordered me j he ordered me money to 
pay my expences up. 3 

Were any forcible means made ufe of to oblige you to take your 
wages in currency in the Weft Indies, in your firft voyage ? 

Yes11 m the manner of paying of our wages; and when I, and 
the fhips company, faid “It is not our due j” and added, « If you 

, -S/E n 1V n u r s -( u11 ? a) > we won,t S° home in the fliip,” Cap¬ 
tain Marfliall faid, « It is the rule of the voyage.” We then 

went to the governor, who gave us no redrefs, and we told the 
captain,“ We would not go home in the fliip;** upon which he went 
and got fome foldiers, and put us into the prifon ; and after Nine- 
there for two or three days, we told the captain, « If he would 
pay the gaol fees, we would agree to go home;” to the beft of 
my remembrance, two or three dollars was the money. The ca D - 
^in went on board, and we failed, and proceeded on the voyage to 

the^r'vidualsT ** ° n b ° ard ^ refufed to eat 

Yes; very often ; they take fulk, and will not eat. 

In what manner are they then made to eat ? 

»i,i°Z ti T C M hC , mlnw, '° them is a P‘ to S‘ vc them a blow 
w«h b s hand; but it .a beft let alone, for the more you beat 
them, the more fulky they are. 1 

Was it the practice on board any of the fhips you have failed in 
to ufe any particular means to oblige them to eat ? 

No; no further than when they take fulk, they let them alone 
and they come to of themfelves. 7 ne * 


[ r 37 I 

Did the Slaves in general feem very melancholy and dejedled ? 

Yes; they did. 

And then the Witnefs was diredled to withdraw. 

The Reverend JOHN NEWTON, Redtor of Saint Mary 
Woolnoth, called in j and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa ? 

I have been in Africa. . 

How long ago, and in what capacity ? 

I was laft in Africa in the year 1754; I was matter of a fhip in 
the African Slave Trade. 

How many voyages on the whole did you make to the Coaft of 
Africa ? 


Were you ever much afliore on the Coaft of Africa ? 

1 lived afhore on the Coaft of Africa about a year and a half. 

On what part of the Coaft ? 

Principally at the llland of Plantains, at the mouth of the 
river Sherbro. 

Was there any civil government in that part of the country ? 

There is an inftitution there called the Purrow, which is both 
the legiflative and the executive power there; it is an order into 
which people are initiated, a lort of African free-mafonry, and 
I fuppofe two-thirds of the inhabitants are of the order ; there are 
deputy principal perfons in this Purrow in every village, and a 
certain word that is pronounced authoritatively brings them all 
together, and unites their force; whatever is commanded by the 
power of that word is done, fo that Slaves will rife againft 
their maflers, and children againft their parents by the force of 
that word. 1 cannot give any better defeription of the govern¬ 

Was the obedience paid to the authority of the Purrow, the re- 
fult of any fuperflitious idea of charms or witchcraft; or was 
it fubmifiion to the eftablifhed authority of the government ? 

I believe it may be a mixture of both; but there is a real efTec- 

N n tive 

[ '38 ] 

tive force ; they certainly do fpeak of charms; but if they did not 
obey the Purrow’s order, their whole towns and villages would be 
deftroyed. After fo long an interval as from the year 1754, I 
cannot be fuppofed to fpeak to every point with equal precihon or 
certainty; but many fafts are fo deeply impreffed upon my mind, 
that 1 cannot forget them while I am capable of remembering 
any thing. 

Is the committee to underhand then, that this long interval will 
caufe you to be uncertain in the information you {hall give, 
or only that it will render you unable to give fuch full information 
as you would have done after a fhorter interval ? 

When I do not make an exception, I mean to be underftood as 
fpeaking pofitively. 

What conclufions did you form refpecting the capacity of the 
Negroes, compared with that of other men in the fame period of 
fociety ? 

I always judged that, with equal advantages, they would be 
equal to ourfelves in point of capacity; I have met with many 
inftances of real and decided natural capacity amongft them. 

What opinion have you formed of the temper and difpofition of 
the Negroes ? 

I mull; confine my anfwer to the place where I lived moft, 
Sherbro ; becaufe it would be as difficult to give a general charac¬ 
ter of the inhabitants of Africa as of the inhabitants of Europe, 
which fhould apply to them all. The people at Sherbro are in 
a degree civilized, often friendly, and may be trufled where they 
have not been previoufly deceived by the Europeans. I have 
lived in peace and fafety amongft them, when I have been, the ouly 
White man amongft them for a great diftance. 

Your laft anfwer being Sherbro, can you give any 
information on the fame points, with refpedf to any other part of 
the coaft ? 

The nioft humane and moral people I ever met with in Africa 
were on the River Gaboon, and at Cape Lopas; and they were the 
people who had the leaft intercourfe with Europe at that time. 

Was there any Slave Trade with them at that time, or any 
commerce for other articles ? 

I believe they had no Slave Trade at that time ; I have heard 
8 them 

L 159 I 

them fpeak againft iti their articles of commerce were ivory and 
bees wax. 

You fav “ you have heard them fpeak againd the Slave Trade, 
will you relate the for, of language they held lo 

felW^t ; 0 flTge, mV boy back again when my anger 
was eone away ?” For the fame reafon they would not ufe 

SFari? Sn 

when my anger is over. 

Bid the praflice prevail at that time of redeeming the 
capdves that had been taken in their little quarrels with one 
another, fpeaking of the country in the netghbourhood of 

Ga i Tan give no anfwer to that; I was not a fufficient time 00 
that part of the eoaft to know'. 

Did they appear grateful for any good offices that were done 

th The a princi a pal people, who received prefents from the ffiip, 
would take no money for the proviftons they brought, for that 
reafon; I mean, becaufe they had received prefents, t ey vvou # 
take no money in return when they made prefents. 

Do not in fiances frequently happen of ffiips or boats being cut 

off by the natives of Africa ? 

I have known both ffiips and boats cut ott. 

How do you reconcile this with the account you have given of 

the inoffenfive difpofition of the natives ? 

I never heard of any ffiip or boat cut off at Gaboon or Cape 
Lopas ; boats have been fometimes cut off at Sherbro ; ut it as 
ufually been by way of retaliation. 

Did the Negroes appear to you to be fo indolent that they 
would not cultivate the ground, &c. and carry on a tra e o 
r.nml produaions of their country, it they were fuffic.ently en- 

C °They C 'have comparatively few wants, and therefore make fewer 
• 7 . hnt 1 do not think they are naturally indolent. We 
hirTmany of them by the month to work on board our ffiips an^ 


r„Tr ’ , and ,hey cul,iva,e 'he ground upon the Windward 

whh^rkf C ' en ' y ‘ " 0t ° n ' y '° fupP ' y themfcl '“> but 'ho ihips. 

• I ™" 1 affea,ons a PPear to be as ftrong in the Negroes 

as in the inhabitants of other countries ? Did you know any ir- 
ftances of women felling their own children, &c. ? y 

polygamy being the general cuftom, it is poflible the na¬ 
tural affections may not be fo ftrong as in other countries; but 
I never heard an rnrtance of a mother felling her own child™ 

w-fnT r' ,at y ° U raW of Africa ’ did ,hc intercourfe of the natives 
»..h the Europeans appear to civilize them, or rather To render 
them more corrupt and depraved ? 

ml ! 16 ,ntercourf «P of / h e Europeans has aftimilated them more 
infl mannerS ^ ut 1 am afra,d has rather had a bad than a good 
influence upon their morals ; I mean they learn our cuftoms fhev 
wear our apparel, they get our furniture; but they are g^neS 

r,h us m e,r condua in prcponi ° n to ** AS 

a rmrfcr/ for ” the AWcan trad '> ia « >° be deemed 

I believe it is a fatal fource of mortality to Teamen. 

To what caufes did you chiefly afcribe this mortality > 
and ilUmltmTnf. mUCh “ ,he » i-emperance. 

Do you think a trade with Africa fnr » , 

would be equally injurious to the marine ? P^ufhons 

thtnfc luch a trade might be carried on without the necefflrv 
of expolmg them to the weather fo much • and .h,. .i t 7 
Trade is a great canfe of the hard treatment ’they recell ' 

How does the Slave Trade produce this effetfl > 

The real or fuppofed neeeflity of treating the Negroes with ri 
gone gradually br.ngs a numbnefs upon the heart* and ~„1 
moll of thole who are engaged in it too indifferent’to the Cuff?* 
tngs of their fellow-creatures, and I fuppofeXe is no t m, I 
rn "Inch feamen are treated with fo little humanity as in the 


[ Hi 3 

African Slave Trade.-—I have myfelf (een them when fick, beaten 
for being lazy till they have died under the blows. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mercurii., 12° die Mail 1790. 

THE Reverend JOHN NEWTON called in j and further 

Did any inftances come to your knowledge of depredations 
being committed on the Coaft of Africa by European Traders ? 

I was once on fhore myfelf, when the Traders fuddenly called 
me away, put me into my long boat, and then told me, that 
the (hip which had juft pafled by had carried off two of their 
people; and had it been known in the town, I fhould have been 
detained myfelf.—I have known many inftances of the like kind j 
—but after a length of time, of thirty-fix years, it is difficult 
to (peak to my own perfonal knowledge—I have only a general 
remembrance of them, and cannot fpeak to the particulars. 

Was it the general opinion on the Coaft of Africa, that depreda¬ 
tions of this fort were frequently committed by the European 
T raders ? 

It was a general opinion, founded upon repeated and indilputable 

Did any thing come to your knowledge refpedting the puniffi- 
ments for crimes being increafed in degree or number in confe- 
quence of the Slave Trade ? 

The queftion being objected to; 

The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And being again called in ; 

The queftion was repeated. 

I know 1 ’ttle of the punifhment infli&ed for crimes, except¬ 
ing the leliing the offenders for Slaves}—and I thought, and 

O 0 believe. 


[ I 4 2 ] 

believe, that many were fold for Slaves whofe puniffiment other- 
wile would have been trifling. 

In the conduct of the Slave Trade, were many frauds prattifed 

on the natives, in refpe£t to the articles that were fold to 
them ? 

Very generally; many people confidered it as a neceffary branch, 
or the traffic; that is, the man who was mod expert in commit¬ 
ting frauds was reckoned the mod handy and clever fellow in the 

Of what nature were thefe frauds ? 

I have known them put falfe heads into their powder calks • 
cut off two or three yards from the middle of a piece of cloth 
where it was not milled; greatly adulterate and lower the fpirits 
(the brandy); and fometimes deal back articles that had been 
delivered into the canoes. 

r. ^ere the men Slaves in general fettered during the Middle 
railage in your voyage ? 

Always; I never put them out of irons till we faw the land in 
the Wed Indies. 

u\a tnis precaution appear to yc 
the Ihip? 

I think the ffiip would not have been fafe without it; it was 
the umverfal cudom at that time. 

Did the Slaves ever plot, or attempt to rife in your velTel ? 

I remember two or three plots, but they were happily dif- 
covered in time, in the Ihips that I was mader of; I was mate of 
a ihip in which there was an infurredtion, where one White man 
was killed, and three or four of the Negroes. 

Were the Slaves, during the Middle PaiTage, in a lituation of 
tolerable comfort when below ? 

They were rather more tolerable in my (hip, becaufe I never 
complcated my purchafe, fo that they had more room; but the 
lituation of Slaves in a lull Ihip is uncomfortable indeed. 

In what refpeft chiefly does it deferve this epithet ? 

. The,r be,n g , ke pt condantly in irons; crowded in their lod<>- 
ing; and often m bad weather almod deditute of air to breath?- 

. b h fid ?ffi h 1! tbcy l uffer . fr ° m the 'h'P' 8 motion in their irons, and 
the difficulty in the n.ght of getting to their tubs, which are 
fometimes overfet. 




[ >43 ] 

In cafes of plots to rife, or of aftual infun e&ions, what were 
the punifhments ufually inflidiedon the Slaves? 

Moil generally fevere hoggings, to which fome commanders 
added the torture of the thumb-fcrews; I mean commanders of 
fhips that I have been on board of. A Captain has told me him- 
felf repeatedly, that he had punifhed Negroes after an infurredtion 
with death. 

Was the number which he faid he had fo punifhed with death, 
after the infurre&ion, confiderable, or was the punifhment aggra¬ 
vated by any previous torture? 

I cannot anfwer for the number, only I am fure it was more 
than one } becaufe he told me of the different ways in which he 
put them to death, which were by cruel tortures. 

Were the fufferings of the Negro women on board fhips ag¬ 
gravated by their being expofed to the brutality of the crew ? 

In many fhips they were, if we allow the Negro women to 
have any degree of fentiinent. 

Did the women in general appear to have as much modefly as 
the women of other countries ? 

I knew many women in Sherbro whom I thought were modeft 
women; I do not know how to date a comparifon. 

Did you ever fee any inftances of a dead Slave being found 

chained to a living one? __ , 

They are fettered, but not chained in pairs; and I have often 
feen in the morning one of the pair dead. 

Did you ever know any inftances of pawns being taken off the 
coaft by the European traders ? 

Fhave. • 

What was the opinion entertained of the Europeans, in your 
time, by the natives of the part of Africa in which you lived ? 

There were individuals thought well of by the natives, but they 
had no good opinion of them upon the whole; and fometimes 
when charged with a fraud or crime, would lay, “ What, do you 
“ think I am a White man ?'* 

Had you on board any of your fhips any and what number of 
children ? 

I have had children born on board.—Small Slaves that are ufually 
fold (I mean fach as are ufually brought to market) ufed to con- 
ftitute about a fourth part of the cargo, from 8 to 16 years. 


[ *44 ] 

Were you ever in a Slave fhip on the difpofal of her cargo in 
the Weft India Iflands ? * 

Three times in the Weft India Iflands, and once at South Ca- 

In felling the cargo, was any care taken to prevent the repara¬ 
tion of relations ? 

It was never thought of; they were feparated as iheep and 
lambs are feparated by the butcher. 

Can you ftate the mortality of Slaves or feamen on board the 
(hips in which you failed ? 

I cannot exadtly; I have the exadt numbers upon my jour¬ 

In your time, was the Slave Trade a profitable commerce to the 
Slave merchants ? 

My concern in it was not profitable to my employers; there 
were fome gainful voyages, but the lofing voyages were thought 
more numerous; it was generally confidered as a fort of a lottery, 
in which every adventurer hoped to gain a prize. 

In what year did you firft go to Africa ? 

In the year 1745. 

How many voyages did you make to the coaft of Africa as com¬ 
mander of a Slave fhip ? 


Was you at Gaboon in the year 1747 ? 

I left Gaboon in the end of the year 1747; perhaps the Iaft day 
of the year, or thereabouts. 3 

How long had you been there in that year? 

I cannot certainly fay; I had no intereft in the fhip ; I was only 
a paflenger; I fuppofe about a month. 3 

Do you recoiled* a certain fnow, called the Fortune, command¬ 
ed by one Captain Tindal, of Lancaiter, being at Gaboon, while 
you was there in the year 1747 ? 

I do not recoiled* any veil'd being at Gaboon whilft I was 


Do you reckon your being at Gaboon for a month in the year 

1747 . 

[ « 4 S ] 

1747, as one of the voyages you fpeak of, when you fay you nlade 
five voyages to the coaft of Africa ? 

I account the interval of my abfence from England a voyage; I 
firft went on board an African (hip at the Ifland of Madeira, in the 
year 1745 ; I was difcbarged from her upon the Coaft, where I 
lived perhaps eighteen months.—The (hip in which I left the 
Coaft, called at Gaboon in the courfe of her voyage.—I arrived in 
England in the year 1748; and I count the whole of that time my 
firft voyage. 

In what capacity or employment did you go to the Coaft of 
Africa from Madeira? 

I was difcharged from a man of war, in the room of a man that 
entered from on board the Guinea man as a foremaft man j but the 
captain made me fteward after I was on board. 

How long did you continue as fuch, or in any other, and what 
capacity, on board of that Guineaman ? 

I continued in the fame capacity about fix month;:, to the beft 
of my recolledion, till the (hip was (laved, and ready to go off the 

Did you remain in Africa, or fail with the (hip after (he was 
Uaved ? 

I was difcharged from the (hip the day (he failed; a perfon who 
was part owner refided on the Coaft, and I went with him. 

What was the nature of your employment in Africa after you 
was difcharged from that (hip, and during your refidence there ? 

As a fervant to White traders, fometimes in their (hallops, and 
fometimes in their houfes, attending the trade. 

Did this fill up the period of a year and a half, which you have 
dated to have lived on (hore on the coaft of Africa ? 

I was wholly fo employed while I (laid there j it was more than 
a year, but I cannot fay whether it was a year and a half; but that 
is the period I allude to. 

During that time what extent of coaft may you have vifited ? 

We traded to the Rio de Nuna, which I fuppofe is about forty 
leagues north from Sierra Leone, and twenty leagues to the fouth- 
ward of Sierra Leone, in the river Sherbro. 


P p Can 


[ i 4 6 ] 

Can you ftate what that extent of coaft may be in Englifh 
leagues ? 

Forty leagues to the North Weft of Sierra Leone, and twenty 
leagues to the fouth eaftj and that is about fixty or feventy 

How often, and how far may you have travelled inland on the 
continent of Africa? 

I once went three days journey, which I fuppofe might be 
fifty miles from the head of the river Camaranca, where I was. I 
never was fo far at any other time j feldom above three, four, or 
five miles from the coaft. 

How far diftant is Camaranca from Sherbro ? 

Four or five leagues, I fuppofe, from the mouth of the river 
Sherbro to the mouth of the river Camaranca j Camaranca is a 
creek rather than a river; a fmall water. 

How long did you remain in the country when you made that 
three days journey that you fpeak of? 

I believe not above two days. 

Have you any knowledge of the country lying between Sierra 
Leone and the river Nuna? 

I have no knowledge of that country from my own perfonal 
knowledge; I never traded there. 

Does not this traft of Country comprize part of the coaft which 
you have ftated to have vifited, and to comprize an extent of fixty 
or feventy leagues ? 

The two moft diftant places being fixty or feventy leagues 
afunder, I neceflarily paffed and repaffed the reft frequendy, but 
we did not trade there. 

During this refidence of a year, or a year and a half, at the ifland 
of Plantains, at the mouth of the river Sherbro, did you acquire 
any perfonal knowledge of the manners and cuftoms of any, and 
what other part of Africa, but what lies immediately in the vi¬ 
cinity of Sherbro? 

I profefs no knowledge of any other part of Africa; I went 
down the whole coaft in the fhip that brought me off, but fhe 
made little ftay at any place, and purchafed no Slaves. 



[ *47 1 

How many voyages did you make to Africa as commander of a 
Slave Ihip ? 


You have faid, “ That it was a general opinion on the coaft of 
« Afiic.i, that depredations, fuch as carrying off the people of 
«* tJ ie coa'try, were committed by European tracers; and that 
«« that opinion was a general and received opinion, founded on re^ 

" peated and indifputable fadts; ” Will you (late fomc of thole re¬ 
peated and indifputable fafts of your own knowledge 

I have dated one fadt alre idy; at this diftance of time I cannot 
take upon me to fpeefy; but when I was upon the coaft I had not 
the lead doubt that there were fuch repeated and indifputable 
fadts when I have vilited a place of trade, 1 have found all trade 
and intercourse ft >pped, and thefc depredations have been affigned 
to me by the natives as the caufe; and I have more than once or 
twice made up breaches of this kind between the Ships and the 

In what parts of the coaft of Africa do you mean to ftate this 
to be a general opinion ? 

The part which we ufually call the Windward Coaft, between 
Sierra Leone and Cape Palmas. 

Is Sherbro on the Windward Coaft ? 

Shcrbro is counted on the Windward Coaft. 

Did you ever, in any of your voyages as mafter of a Ihip, carry 
off any Slaves that had been procured by depredations by any 
Europeans ? 

Not knowingly. 

Then do you not in charity think, that other mafters of Slave 
fhips have been as innocent of fuch a practice (as you ftate it to 
be the general opinion of the people on the coaft to exift) as you 
yourfclf have been ? 

I would not be uncharitable ; but I cannot fuppofe that my own 
views and conduct, when mafter of an African Ihip, were wholly 
a fpecimcn of all that was tranfadled on the coaft; I knew feveral 
captains of (hips upon the coaft, who I believe were honeft and 
humane men, but I have good reafon to think they were not 
all fo, the depredations or taking off Slaves by force have been 
thought moft fiequeut when the captain has been upon the coaft> 

[ 148 ] 

as he fuppofed for the lad voyage, and was not likely to be called ' 
to account for it in future. 

Then is the Committee to underdand that this practice of 
carrying off Slaves that have been procured by depredation, is indif- 
criminately attributed by the natives to all captains of Guinea- 
men in each voyage they make to the coaft, or only in the laffc 
voyage that they make to that country ? 

The natives can hardly be fuppofed to know when a fhip is 
making her lad voyage j the truth is, that fuch depredations and 
reprifals attempted for them were both fo frequent that the 
Europeans and Afiicans were in a fpirit of mutual didrudj it was 
but feldom that they would place any dependance upon us, and 
we could as feldom depend upon them. 

By whom do you mean that it was underflood that depreda¬ 
tions or carrying off Negroes by force was fuppofed to be by the 
captains in the lafl voyage they made, and when they were not 
likely to be called to account for it in future? 

I do not mean that there were no fuch depredations except in 
their lafl voyage; many things happen which may be called the 
news of the day, and may be worthy of credit and fully believed 
at the time, though the ground of that belief cannot be always 
recalled a great while afterwards; I have not the lead doubt but 
that there were often depredations of this kind ; I have known 
fhips both from Liverpool and Briflol materially injured in their 
trade and boats, in confequence of the conduct of fome fhips 
from the fame ports, that had left the Coafl. 

Quedion repeated. 

This is the refult of the opinions that mailers and officers form 
amongfl themfelves. 

Have you ever heard any mailers or commanders exprefs fuch 
an opinion ? 

I have frequently heard them. 

Do you mean that it was their opinion, that the carrying off of 
Slaves procured by depredations was generally confined to the 
lad voyage that the captains guilty of thofe practices intended to 
make ? 

It has been known as a matter of fadt, that fome captains have 
done fo in their lad voyage, who have not been known to have 
done it before. 


t H 9 1 

Have you ever been at the ifland of St. Thomas 
I never was. 

Had you conftant and familiar intercourfe with the natives, 
during your refidence for the time you have mentioned on the 

coaft of Africa ? . , 

I was for the moft of that time in an abjed ftate of fervitude 

and ficknefs; I have known them better when I was matter of a 

fhip to the fame part. 

Had you any doubts or fcruples of the lawfulness of the Slave 
Trade at the time you were engaged in carrying it on as captain 
of* 2l vcflci ? 

I felt it very ineligible; but 1 had no fcruple of the lawfulnefs 
of it. 

In fpeaking of depredations, and of other matters, wherein 
you cannot call to mind the particular fads, cannot you be fure 
that you formed your conclufions upon premifes in which you 
were at that time fully grounded ? 

Mott certainly. 

And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

Mr. JAMES MORLEY, Gunner of the Medway, called 

in j and examined. 

How many voyages have you been to the coaft of Africa ? 


Will you ftate, as near as you can recoiled, the times, the veflels 
names, the ports from which they failed, and the part of the coaft 
to which they went ? 

As nigh as I can recoiled, my firft voyage was in the year 1760, 
in the Eagle galley. Captain Jones; Ihe failed from Briftol, and 

went to Angola. . . .. 

The next was the Amelia, about 1763 ° r t 7 ^ 4 » Captain Mixon, 

from Briflol to Old Calabar. _ 

My third voyage was in the year 1767, in the Marcus floop. 
Captain Bifhop, (fhe was a tender to the Cato, Captain Jones,) from 
Briftol to Old Calabar. 

The fourth voyage was in the Tom, Captain Matthews, about 
1771 or 1772, from Briftol to the river of Gaboon. 

[ 1 S° ] 

The fifth voyage was in the Venus,-Forbes, matter, about 

x 773 or J 774 > from Briftol to Old Calabar. 

The fixth voyage was in the Whim, Captain Butler, about 
1770, from Liverpool to Annamaboe. 

In what employment have you been fince you left the African 

In His Majetty’s fervice ever fince. 

On what account did you leave the African Trade ? 

Upon account of the ill ufage moftly that I had received myfelf 
and feen towards others. J * 

How then came you to continue fo long in the trade ? 

My reafon for continuing fo long in the trade was, a promife 
or promotion, and to maintain my family, having been brought up 
moftly in that trade at that time. 0 r 

Were you gradually promoted while you remained in the 
trade r 

f^ firft fhip I was a fervant, in the fecond likewife, the 

third before the maft, the fourth gunner, the fifth boatfwain and 
mate, and the fixth mate. * 

How old were you when you firft went on board as a 
fervant ? 

About nine or ten. 

Have you been much on the coaft of Africa, and far up the 
country ? r 

Yes j I have. 

Will you ftate where ? 

At Calabar river, the river of Gaboon, and the river of Naza¬ 
reth, or Briftol river. 

How far up thofe rivers have you been ? 

To judge from the length of time we have been going up the 

nV c-a the . craft » 3 °° or 400 miles; I am fpeaking of Nazareth 
or .. ri ® tiver ; I have been up the river of Gaboon about 200 
miles ; 1 only judge from the time we were going np in the craft, 
for I never kept any log. 

On what other parts of the coaft have you been ? 




[ 1J* ] 

Angola, Affenie, Cape Appolonia, Cape Coaft, Annamaboe, 
Old Calabar, Gaboon, and Nazareth ; thole are the places that 
I have been moftly at. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Jovis , 13 0 die Mali 1790. 

Mr. JAMESMORLEY called in; and further examined. 

Do you know any thing of the different productions of 
Africa ? 

Yesj cotton, gold, rice, pepper of different kinds, palm oil, 
tobacco, and wood of different kinds for dyes. 

Do you ever buy any rice on the coaft for the fupply of your 
different fhips ? 

No j I never was ricing on the coaft, but I have been buying 
it in fmall quantities off the River Sifters, and different places on 
the Windward Coaft. 

Was rice ever offered to you without your enquiring after it ? 

Yes; this rice we bought was brought alongfide in canoes 
Without any enquiry for it. 

As far as you have had any inter courfe with the people, did 
they or did they not feem willing to perform any fervices which 
you required of them; and which you offered to pay them 

Always willing, where they had a profped of being paid im¬ 
mediately, as far as ever I faw. 

Have you had much intercourfe with the natives on the various 
parts of the coaft ? 


From your knowledge of them, do you apprehend that they 
might be induced to raife different articles of produce, if they 
Were certain of obtaining a fpeedy fale for them ? 


[ *52 ] 

Yes; that is* if they were made to fee that they could get as 
much by railing this produce as by felling the Slaves. 

Do they appear to have any ideas of trading for different com¬ 
modities among themfelves ? 

Yes; by the fmall traffic I have feen between themfelves, fuch 
as provifion; I remember ivory being fold at the fame time with 
the provifions, in thefe markets j this is the only traffic that I 
have feen among themfelves; they have alfo a traffic for Slaves 
among themfelves, all through the country. 

Do the confiderable men poflefs Slaves as a property ? 

They deem their Slaves as their own property, I look upon it. 

Have you made any obfervations on the manner in which fuch 
Slaves are generally treated ? 

With the greateft kindnefs that ever I have feen ; more fo than 
our fervants or Slaves in the Weft Indies. 

Is it ufual with them to fell thefe Slaves ? 

Not any that came under my notice, but far from it j for they 
do not care to part with fuch for any price, wherever I have been j 
but I wilh to make this diftindtion, I mean their canoe boys, or 
houfe fervants. 

From whom do you mean to diftinguilh thefe canoe boys and 
houfe fervants ? 

From the Slaves who are brought out of the country for 

Do you know any thing of the different manners in which thefe 
dcmeftic Slaves are employed ? 

Yes, in cultivation of the ground for railing provifions, filhing, 
getting palm oil, palm-wine, making grafs cloths, and other 
cloth of their own manufacture, making and thatching of houfes, 
going in their canoes backwards and forwards to different places, 
and attending the neceffary duty of their own families and 

Have you ever known whether Slaves whom the Europeans 
have reful'ed to buy, having been employed in any of thefe occu¬ 
pations i 

Yes ; in Old Calabar, in the king of Aquaw’s dominions, I knew 
an inftance of one that was offered to the fliip I belonged to j I 


[ 153 ] 

faw that Slave at work in the plantation myfelf, when out at 
Aquavv getting Slaves. 

Have you any reafon to think that this was an extraordinary 
circumftance; or on the contrary, do you believe it to be a com¬ 
mon praftice? 

A common praflice; I am convinced of that. 

Have you ever known any methods made ufe of by the per- 
fons belonging to Guinea (hips to induce the natives to (ell fuch 
Slaves as you have before mentioned they were in general un¬ 
willing to part with ? 

Yes; I have myfelf (I tell it with fhame) made the natives 
drunk, where I have leen a good man, or a good woman, and I 
have given them an extraordinary price for the fame j I abfolutely 
thought at the time I was doing it for my owners good to the 
utmoft of my power. 

Do you, or do you not, know this to have been a common 
pradtice with other perfons employed in the trade ? 

I have feen it done by others} captain Hildebrand, who was 
mafter of a floop belonging to Mr. Brue, paid an extraordinary 
price for a woman, one of a man’s wives, after making of him 
drunk; the man wilhed to redeem her the next day, and fo did the 
perfon that 1 bought the man of, but we did not give them up, 
neither he, nor 1; and I fuppofe they would have given a third 
of the goods more than they had for them, but we did not chufe 


Do you know any thing of the methods by which Slaves 
are ufually obtained from the Coaft ? 

The greateft method that ever came under my infpedtion is the 
buying of them. 

Do you know any thing of the manner in which the Black 
traders obtain them ? 

1 never found any that came under my infpedtion that was 
taken away by fraud but one—in Briftol or Nazareth River; it 
was one that came down to get (hell-fifh that I bought; but I 
have been told by the natives at Calabar of a different manner; 
that in what they call war they have taken them as captives; but 
what they call war I found was putting of the fmall towns and 
villages in confufion, and catching them as they could ;—I know 
an inftance on board the (hip I was in—A man there that was 
fold, (hewed in what manner he was taken in the night, by fur- 

id r prize i 

[ 1 54 ] 

prizej and he faid, his wife, and children, and all were taken with 
him, but they were not in the (hip he was in; this I heard 
him tell Archibald Robin John, who could talk the tongue; 
he was a pawn on board. 

Had you reafon to believe from this man’s relation, that other 
perfons belonging to the village were taken at the fame time, in 
the fame manner ? 

I have no other reafon, from the man’s words of himfelf and 
family, but to think that they took the whole village} thofe that 
could not get away, I cannot think but what they did. 

Did you underftand that the pra&ice of feizing perfons in 
the manner defcribed out of the villages was frequent in that 
part of the country of which you are now fpeaking ? 

I never heard of any other. 

Do you know any thing of perfons being fold for Slaves on 
account of crimes, either real or imputed to them, for the pur- 
pofe of felling them ? 

Yes; in Old Calabar for adultery and theft; under pretence 
of the former there was a woman fold that I can remember. 

What reafon have you to think that the accufation of adultery 
againft that woman was only a pretence ? 

From her own mouth, for (he could fpeak Englilh, and very 
good Englilh too, and from the manner that Ephraim, her huf- 
band, whom they call king, treated her when he came on board, 
which was with the greateft civility; whereas in thefe cafes they 
are very defperate. 

What do you mean by thefe cafes ? 

When they commit fuch errors. 

Do you mean that the hufbands are very defperate, when they 
believe that the women have actually committed adultery ? 


Have you ever feen boys and girls on board the (hips without 
their parents, or any other relations, to whom they apparently 
belonged ? 


Have you ever known any captain of a Guineaman make ufe 
7 either 

[ 155 ] 

cither of fraud or force, to carry off any of the natives as 
Slaves ? 

Yesj—off Taboo, two men came alongfide of the ftiip I 
belonged to in a canoe ;—one of them came up as high as the 
netting on the quarter deck, and gave the Captain a book (they 
call it fuch, but it is only a bit of paper) fpecifying their cha¬ 
racter and behaviour.—They got them from the fhips on the 
Coaft.—Moft fhips give them or.e that they come on board of.— 
The Captain afked him if he would drink any brandy, which 
he told him he would, in Englifh.—When the brandy was 
brought, he defired him to come into the fhip, for he was then 
only on the netting or gunwale, which he abfolutely refufed to 
do.—The Captain then ordered the brandy to be carried back, 
and fome laudanum put into it, but the quantity I can’t tell, 
which' was brought and given him, he ftiil fitting on the net¬ 
ting, and the Captain perfuading of him to come into the fhip, 
or on deck, and kept talking to him, and afking him fome 
queftions; and after fome talk, afked him again if he would have 
another dram; he faid he would, which was ordered him with a 
portion of laudanum likewife put in,—he then defired the man 
to come out of the canoe, and get a dram ;—he refufed; and did 
not come in-,—this man on the netting feemed to have fome 
anxiety to come in by the form he feemed to fit in.—In a minute 
he began to fall as it were in a dofe;—the liquor itfelf was 
enough to do it, as he drank near two tumblers of brandy ;— 
the Captain laughed, feeing of him in this ftate, and faid repeat¬ 
edly, “ I fhall have you prefently. Matter jacky;” (if I remem¬ 
ber his name was John;) which was abfolutely the cafe, for he 
fell in upon deck.—The Captain ordered him immediately to be 
taken down to the men’s room, and there put a centry over him. 
Running about three or four leagues further down the Coaft we 
hove the fhip to again to receive a canoe that was pulling off to 
us as the other had done.—Two men came on board.—During 
the time of their being on board, there was a drum beating by 
this than, in order to prevent his hearing of them, or they him 
fpeaking.—The Captain gave the people that came in the ca¬ 
noe a glafs of brandy each ; there being a boat lying in fiiore, 
he did not detain tiiefe men.—We then made fail, and proceeded 
on our voyage;—but however 1 forgot to rehearfe the circum- 
ftance of the man that was in the canoe.—After calling for this 
man feveral times that had tumbled on deck, having no anfwer, 
he put the canoe off, and paddled towards the fliore as faft as he 
could. The Captain perceiving it, fired feveral mufkets with ball 
in them, but I am fure they did not hit him. 



[ >J« ] 

Do you recollcil any other inftance of Negroes being forcibly 
carried off by any captain whom you knew ? 

Yes; Captain Matthews, of the Prince of Wales, at Gaboon— 
the voyage before that 1 was with him in the Tom—and in this 
form I came by my knowledge of it: When we came into Ga¬ 
boon river in the Tom, Captain Matthews dtfired Quinnel, the 
chief mate, who had formerly been a captain in the African 
Trade, to call himfelf captain of that veffel, while he hid him- 
felf away; which he did. Two of the natives, whofe names 
were John and Smack Abram, being two of the chief’s fons, told 
Quinnel pofitively that he lied, and that he was not captain— 
Matthews, hearing this, came up the fcuttle, laughing, and ap¬ 
peared himfelf—As foon as thefe two faw him, they afked him, 
w hat he had done with their ions, and the boys that he had car¬ 
ried off the coaft—and pofitively told him in Engliih, “ that he 
“ (hould not come a-fhore there to trade; if he did, they would 
“ have his head;” and went into their canoe, calling to him after 
they had left the veflel, and making motions to him, with their 
hands to their necks, to the fame purpofe. 

Have you known any other inftances of violent and cruel beha¬ 
viour from the commanders of Slave veffels towards the inhabi¬ 
tants of any part of the Coaft? 

No, I can’t fay any other, that I am pofitive in. 

Have you ever known the Mafter of a Slave veffel fire upon the 
Natives, and on what account ? 

Yes; in the Ifland of Furnandipr,—I was there in the Marcus 
floop, in order to purr hafe provifions for the fhip we were tender 
to. In the height of trading with them, fome of them had 
ftole a few firings of fmall beads—Bifhop, the mafter, ftriking the 
man who had taken them, they all immediately flew up to the 
fide of the wood from the boat—he then himfelf fired in amongft 
the thick of them, and ordered likewife the men to do the fame 
in the boat—on which we heard great fhrieking, and immediately 
they all difaj peared—we then went out of the boat a little way 
into the wood, to fee what way they took; where we faw the 
track of blood for many yards; from which we thought fome 
were wounded undoubtedly, if not killed—but, however, that wc 
could never learn. 

Had any of the natives offered violence to the boat’s crew ? 

Not any as I remember. 



[ *57 ] 

Then the following queftion and anfwer being again read lev 
the Witnefs j viz. “ Have you known any other inftances of vio- 
M lent and cruel behaviour from the commanders of Slave Vefiels 
** towards the inhabitants of any part of the Coaft ? 

“ No ; I can’t fay any other, that I am pofitive in 

He was afked. 

Did you understand this queftion? 

No; I did not. 

Are you well acquainted with the Situation of Old and New 
Town, Calabar ? 


How far apart are they ? 

From Old Town to the Duke’s Town, bv way of the creek 
which they formerly ufed to go, it is about four or five miles j but 
to go down the river as far as the mouth of Crofs River, to thefe 
towns, is 16 or 18 miles, or more, but I can’t be pofitive to a mile 
or two ; for you have firft to go down the river where Old Town 
lies, then you have to go up Crofs River, where the Shipping lies, 
to trade at New Town; New Town is a long way from lhe Hi ip- 
ping: before the towns parted they ufed always to go by the way 
of the creek. 

Were the Slaves clofJy flowed on board moll of the vefiels in 
which you have failed ? 

When there has been a full purchafe they are undoubtedly 
clofely flowed, but when they come off Short of purchafe, and 
have had mortality, they have more room confequently. 

Have you ever been yourfeif employed in flowing them when 
the lhip has been full ? 


In what manner have you done it ? 

As dole as pofiible that I could put them. 

Were the men moflly kept in irons during the whole of the 
pafiage to the Weft Indies ? 

In moft fhips that I have been in.. 

S s 



[ * 5 * 1 

In what fituation have you feen the Slaves between decks,, when 
they have been flowed as clofely as you have mentioned ? 

In great perfpirations; in particular after heavy rains, when they 
have been obliged to keep the tarpaulins over the gratings for any 
length of time; I have been down myfelf, both wiping them and 
feeing of them wiped ; and have found them in violent perfpira- 
rons, fufficient to give reafon to think, if they had been long kept 
clofe in that manner, fu£Foc 3 tion muft have taken place—but this 
I never found it had. 

Have you ever perceived them under very great difficulty of 
breathing ? 

Yes; the women in particular, frequently getting up on the 
beams where the gratings have been railed with bannifters, about 
four foot above the combings, in order to give air; they get up 
there to breathe more freely ; but when we find this the cafe, 
we generally drive them down, becaufe they take the air from the 
o:her Slaves. 

Have you ever known Slaves, when indifpofed, beaten for re- 
fufing their food or medicines ? 

Yes; at the time of fea ficknefs, on leaving a place, I have 
known them make them keep the rice in their mouths, by hold¬ 
ing of it in, in order to make them fwallow it, till they have been 
almoft firangled; I have feen the furgeon’s mates on giving them 
medicines, force the pannikin between their teeth, and throw it 
over them, in a manner that not one half of it has gone into their 
mouths ; this was done when the poor wretches have been wal¬ 
lowing or fitting in their blood or excrements, hardly having life; 
and this with blows with the cat; damning them for being fulky 
Black b-: 1 do declare, thatl have known the doctor's mate re¬ 

port a Slave dead, and have him thrown oveiboard, when tnere 
has been life in him, and he has ftruggled in the water after being 
thrown overboard ; this 1 faw ; and why they did this, not one 
on board could imagine, only to get clear of the trouble; that was 
the conjecture of them that faw it. 

About what number of Slaves, as near as you can recolledt, 
were there taken on board the Eagle galley in your firfl voyage ? 

Seven hundred. 

About what number were loft ? 

To the beft of iny remembrance about 250 j but I believe it 
was more. 


[ 159 1 

Tn your fecond voyage, how many were taken on board the 
Amelia ? 

About 200; but.there might be more. 

What do you recoiled of the lofs in that voyage ? 

About eighteen or twenty, more or lefs; I am not pofitive. 

How many were taken in your fourth voyage, on board the Tom ? 

About 150 ; or more. 

Do you recollect the mortality ? 

Not particularly; twenty-five, more or lefs. 

How many on board the Venus, in your fifth voyage ? 

About 250, or between that and 300. 

What do you recoiled of that mortality ? 

About twenty ; but I am not fure. 

Can you fpeak with any certainty as to the laft voyage, in the 
Whim ? 

No; I cannot. 

In what manner were the Slaves ufually fold in the Weft 

Some on board, fome on fhore; I have known them fold m 
both ways; it is moll commonly on fhore. 

Have you ever feen them fold by what is called fcramble ? 

Yes ; my lafl voyage only; that is the only time I ever favv them 
fold by fcramble. 

Was there any care taken to prevent the feparation of relations 
in that mode of fale ? 

No; not as I know of. 

Were you not mate of the veffel at the time ? 

Yes; third mate. 

How have you known what are called refufe Slaves fold in the 
Weft Indies ? 

Thofe Slaves that do not average wita the. cargo are iold by 
auction, what is called vendue. 

8 Have 

Have you ever been a witnefs to the condition of fuch Slaves 
after they have been fold ? 

Yesj feeing of them lie about the beach at Saint Kitt’s, in the 
market place, and in the different parts of the town (Slaves that 
came out of the fame fhip 1 was in), in a very bad condition, and 
apparently nobody to take care of them. 

How do you account for the owners of fuch Slaves abandoning 
them in the manner you have deferibed ? 

In the following manner I have known the poorer fort of 
people buy Slaves at vendue for a trifle; I cannot fiy particularly ; 
a few dollars; not thinking of the expence for their cure that they 
muft be at ; when they find to the contrary of their expectations, 
that they will cofl: more than they gave for them, in order to raife 
them, they let them go about any where, where they can or will. 

I have been called upon an inqueft at the Ifland of Jamaica, where 
from the appearances of the body, we have been obliged to give in 
our verdict, “ died for want.’’ Upon an enquiry being made for 
the owner, the perfon who was fjfpeded to be the owner has 
denied that it was his Slave. 

Mention what you know of the methods by which Guinea 
/hips are fupplied with feamen ? 

Some enter voluntary, others are kept by their landlords till 
they are in debt; they then offer them a Guineaman, or gaol ; this 
1 know. I will relate an inftanee : One Sullivan, a landlord, in 
IVIar/li Street, in Briffol, got two or three young fellows in that 
manner in debt, and forced them in my hearing, to go on board the 
Guineaman to which 1 belonged, or to gaol; thefe I lent a hand to 
carry on board myfelf. 

Do you know this to be a common praClice ? 

Not that I can pofitively fpeak to. 

From your long acquaintance with the trade, do you believe it 
to be fo ? 


How have the feamen been generally treated on board the Guinea 
fhips in which you have failed ? 

With great rigour, and many with cruelty. 

Do you recoiled any particular inftances? 

\es; many—in the Venus, Captain Forbes, Matthews, the 


[ i6i ] 

chief mate would knock a man down for a very frivolous thine - 
fucb as not being as quick as he wanted him wit ha fwab or uoon 
any mall occafion, and this, with any thing that he could m in 
is hand, a cat, a piece of wood, or a cook’s ax, with whifh he 
once cut a man down his right fhoulder, by throwing of this ax at 
him m h,s pafiion.—Likewife in the Amelia, Captain Dixon the 
men were treated with great cruelty, not only with the cat’but 
ying up and flogging of them, giving them four or five doz^n 

!f tL? a th m Vi thCn them With P ickle ’ 

have heard L foil,h°m'fo^ , WC "”. 1 
wi.h him (I was his cabin boy), for only breakin^o/a ^afs," whfch 
was an accident, was tied up to the tiller, in The cabin, by my 

r™ is JUttas* raft asctt 

thC f lloWanc f of P r °vifions to the feamen, in the voyages 
Scanty 0 ^ ufuaIly been P lentifu J or otherwife ? V S 

What fhelter from the weather have they had ? 

e heavens ; no other that I know of; in the Middle Paflage 

pa,rase - they ,ie u ^ n ** & 
boafoorneafoi n psr ny ^ «>'«*. on 

,llI C VA L . my vo >' a g“. !■> every one of them, for it was 

all to a fickiy part of the coafl that I went. 

What treatment did they ufoally receive whenftck l 
Generally bad._I have known men a(k to have their wounds 
dreffed, or ulcers; and I have heard the doflor, with oaths and 
abufive language, tell them to take their dung and drefs them. 

doftor mdo'ht duty”? * *** f “ ch compel the 

the^autaln ‘ foL h r t the d °?° r , J“ this anfwer !n the hearing of 
the captain, that I know of. I have known thedoflpr, or at lead his 

a 1 mates. 

[ > 6 * 1 

mates, go to bleed a man, and after cutting of him three or four 
times with a lancet, and fetching no blood, he has bound up h,s 
arm, and reported to the captain, that he had bled him. 

Do you know any thibg of the manner in which Guinea feamen 

are paid their wages in the Weft Indies ? 

In the currency of the country in every (hip that I have been in. 

Is defertion from the Guinea (hips, to your knowledge, a more 
common pradice than from Weft Indiamen, or from any other 
trade with which you are at all acquainted ? ~ T 

Yes; more fo from the Guineamen than from any Welt lndia- 

man that I have been in. 

Do you know or believe it to be much more frequent ? 

Yes ; in moft of the Guinea (hips that I have been in, the greateft 
part have been runners home. 

Do you know any thing of the fituation, in the Weft Indies, of 
thofe feamen who have either defer ted or have been difcharged 

from Guineamen ? . r 

Yes ; and fo do moft men that have ever been to the Weft In- 
dies; you frequently fee them lying about the wharfs, beaches, 
and different places, in almoft all the Iflands in the Weft Indies, 
with ulcerated legs and other diforders, almoft dead ; I have feen 
many of them in a melancholy fituation, and I have given them 
many times money to go and buy bread. 

Were you ever a witnefs to any very great feverity of puniih- 
ment inflided on a Slave in the Weft Indies ? 

Yes- in Jamaica, I faw a man hoifted up with a crane upon 
one of the wharfs (I think it was the Market wharf) with three 
or four fifty fixes lalhed to his feet, and he was hove up tort; 
then was flogged with a whip, not one of the long cart whips 
that they generally flog them with, but a fhort whip, and the 
fkin {welled up in gieat lumps; it was not broke but bruifed; 
the fame Negro, after he had done flogging him with the whip, 
took a bunch of ebony, and flogged him on the fame parts that 
had been flogged before, till the blood ran from moft parts ot 
his back ; on my afking one that flood by, his crime, he informed 
me it was for running away from his mailer; then I afked him, 
why the ebony was made ufe of after flogging him with the 
whip; he told me it was to let out the bruifed blood from his 
back. Another inftance I faw in the fame ifland, while I was 

there, though not at the fame time j a woman flogged in a cruel 
* ° manner 

[ i«3 ] 

manner (this Was in the town of Kingfton), on inquiring into her 
crime I was told that (lie had hired herfelf from her miftrefs and 
was to pay fo much a month, which (he had not done; I know 
many inftances of this kind. 

Did you ever fee Slaves in the Weft Indies branded by the 

buyer, merely as a mark of property ? 

Yes; in Jamaica, after heating marking irons over the flame of 
burning rum, they have been applied to the thick ot the thigh, as 
they came through the barricado, one by one; that is the only 
inftance that ever I favv done. 

Do you recoiled the circumftance of the mate of a Liverpool 
Guineaman being (hot by one of the natives; if you do, relate the 

^ l do; Captain Brigg’s chief mate (I have forgot the name of 
the (hip, though (he lay juft a-head of us in Old Calabar river) 
lving in ambufli to flop the natives as they came down the 
creek purfued Oruc Robin John, who immediately made for the 
wood* or bufli on feeing the boat follow him, jumped on more 
with his mufket, levelled it, and (hot Briggs’s mate through the 
head • the people then brought him alongfide of the Amelia, 
■which 1 was in, and informed the captain that the mate was (hot; 
he immediately ordered them to carry him on board his own 
(hip, and not bring him there for a fpedacle ; neither did he fend 
his dodor or dodor’s mate to ftop the blood or look at his 

Have you any reafon to believe that any bad confequences fol¬ 
lowed upon Captain Matthews carrying off the fons of the Black 

traders, as you have before mentioned ? 

Yes • by an informaiion given by Mr. Walker, mafter of a 
(loop, who was on board the Jolly Prince, Captain Lambert, 
when the king of Nazareth ftabbed the captain at his own tab e, 
took the (hip or veflel, putting all the White Men to death; the 
cook and a boy, and I believe one man, were the only perfons that 
efcaped. Captain Punter, mafter of the Prince of Wales brig, 
belonging to the fame owners, alking Captain Walker “ For what 
«< r eafon the king of Nazareth had taken this ftep? he faid. It 
«« was upon the account of the people that Matthews had carried 
c< off from Gaboon and Cape Lopas the voyage before. 

Was not Walker one of the perfons that efcaped? _ 

Yes; and that by knowing the tongue; he could fpeak it as well 

as Englifh. D id 


[ 164 ] 

Did not the Jolly Prince belong to the fame owners as Captain 
Matthews’s £hip ? * 


In what places were you afhore in Africa ? 

The river of Gaboon, Old Calabar, on the Coaft of Angola, 
Annamaboe, Cape Coaft, Aflenie, Commenda, Secundee, Dixcove 
Amunda, Brandenburgh or Fort Orange, and many other 

How long was you afhore at Gaboon ? 

A week fometimes, and fometimes two or three days. 

Did you fee any quantity of ivory at Gaboon ? 

A great quantity. 

Where did it come from ? 

From the interior parts of the country. 

How was it brought down ? 

The Negroes bring it on their fhoulders in this 
their heads—I have feen it both ways. 

place, or on 

now rar was you up above Parrots Iftand ? 

About 200 miles, reckoning by the time I was in the canoe 

in going up, for I never was up in a boat in that river, but alwavs 
in a canoe. * 

Is the country flat or marfhy about Gaboon ? 

Down by the water fide in fome places it is, but the more 
we go up the river the better the land; and it runs high in the 

back parts of the country; we can fee the double land a great 
way back. 6 

Is the country overflowed at particular 
Never at the time of my being there; 
was about Gaboon. 

times of the year ? 
and I never heard that it 

How often was you at Old Calabar ? 

Three voyages. 

Is cotton or rice grown at Calabar or Gaboon ? 

. Co t Uon in quantities, both at Calabar and Gaboon: but no 
rice that ever I faw. * 



[ i65 ] 

Did you ever fee any cotton exported from thence ? 

No, I never did ; but I have picked it, and made pillows of it for 
my own ufe—it is very fine but very Ihort in the pod. 

Did you ever fee any villages put into confufion, and the natives 
taken ? 

No, I never faw it. 

Did you fee the laudanum put into the brandy that the captain 
gave the man ? 

I faw the liquid poured out of the bottle, but whether it was lau¬ 
danum or not I cannot fay. 

What colour was the brandy that was given to the man ? 

A fort of an amber-colour; the brandy of itfelf rather high. 

Is not laudanum of a black colour ? 

This that I faw poured into the brandy was not black, but it was 
a very dark brown; I do not particularly know laudanum; but the 
captain ordered him to pour in laudanum, and I faw him pour the 
liquid out of the bottle. 

What colour was the liquor when given to the man ? 

Very thick and muddy after it was mixed with this liquid out of 
the bottle. 

How old was you in your firft voyage in the Eagle galley ? 

Between nine and ten. 

Do you remember fufficiently the circumftances of that voyage, to 
enable you to fpeak corredtly to the number of lick Slaves on board ? 

No ; I cannot pofitively fpeak to it. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Veneris , 14 0 die Maii 1790. 

JAMES MORLEY called in; and further examined. 

Do you know of the expreflion of wharfingers, as applied to 
failors in the Weft Indies, and what it means? 

U u 

[ '66 ] 

Yes; it is what they are called by the feafaring people in general, 
becaufe they have ulcerated legs, and are fickly, lying about the 
wharfs and private places, feemingly having no place of refidence; 
the Tailors call them fo; it is a fea term ; they call them fo where 
there are wharfs; but they call them beach horners, and other cant 
names, where there are no wharfs. 

Did you know any inftances of frauds being pra&ifed on the na¬ 
tives of Africa, in rcfpedt to articles fold to them by the European 

traders ? 

Yes; relating to themfelves, but not to the Whites. I have 
known an inftance in Old Calabar frequent; when the countrymen 
have been bartering with the captain, the great men belonging to the 
place, who could fpeak Englifh, after telling the captain the quan¬ 
tity of goods that the countryman would wifh to have for his Slave, 
the king or this-great man has pointed out fuch articles to be kept 
back for him, and fuch a quantity to be paid to the countryman; 
fuch goods 1 have handed up myfelf after the barter; that inftance is 
the only one I know. 

Did you ever know inftances of the European traders making the 
natives drunk, and then defrauding them in bargaining for Slaves, 
either in what regarded the quantity or quality of the goods to be 
paid for them? 

No further than I have related of myfelf, of making the natives 
intoxicated to get them as cheap as I could ; that is a fraud, I look 
upon it, though I have done it. 

Were you careful to purchafe no Slaves but fuch as appeared to be 
in good health ? 

Yes; always very particular in that; and fo I look upon it are 
moft captains, or any body that purchafe them; they always look to 
that particular. 

Did you ever appropriate the boy’s room to the purpofe of an 
he fpital on board your fhip? 

No, never; we had always an hofpital forward, before the men’s 
room ; that would juft be bringing the fick into the body of the 
fhip, and I think would be wrong. 

What did the rice generally ufe to come on board in, in bags or 
bafkets ? 

In bafkets, made feemingly of bamboo leaves. 


[ * 6 7 ] 

How many pounds of rice did one of thofe containj as near 
as you can recoiled ? 

About fixteen pounds; about two gallons. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Royal Navy, called in j and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa? 


When, on what part of the coaft, and in what fituation ? 

I was fecond lieutenant of the Grampus, in the years 17?^ 1 
and the beginning of the year 1786; and commanded the Nautilus 
in the year 1787, in carrying out the Black poor, to be iettled on the 
river Sierra Leone, where I remained from the beginning of May 
to the latter end of September following. 

Did the foil and climate of Africa appear to you in general, in 
thofe parts which you vifited, adapted for the production of articles 
which might be imported into this country wi'h great advantage ? 

The articles of commerce which the country produced are, cotton, 
indigo, tobacco, fitgar-canes, cam-wood for dying, gums, carda- 
mums, and rice, as well as ivory andgold-duft ; thofe I think were 
the principal. 

Did the Negroes appear to you fo indolent that they could not be 
brought to cultivate the ground, or to trade with the Europeans in 
the natural productions of the country, ii fufficient encouragement 
were held out to them fo to do ? 

No; I do not think they were fo indolent as that; and if they 
were inftruCted and encouraged, I fhould fuppofe that they would 
turn their thoughts to cultivating thofe things, that they would find 
upon felling to Europeans advantageous to themfelves. 

Can you mention any faCt which fell under your own notice 
during your ftay at Sierra Leone, which contradicts the notion of 
their extreme indolence? 

Yes; I know of one inftance, which is, that feveral of the na¬ 
tive, at Sierra Leone, Were employed at a fmall expence by the 
« Black 

[ i68 ] 

Black people whom I carried out to aflift them in building their ha¬ 

Did the natives of Africa appear to you inferior in point of capa¬ 
city to other perfons in the fame uncivilized Hate ? 

No j on the contrary, they appeared to be poflefied of great quick- 
nels, and a great deal of cunning. 

- Do the natives of Africa, in moft parts that you have vifited, ap¬ 

pear a harmlefs inoffenfive people ? 

Thole that inhabit Sierra Leone appear to be lo. 

Is there any particular term commonly ufed on the Coaft of Africa 
to exprefs kidnapping or leizing of men ? 

I have heard that the word Panyar implies that meaning. 

Is not the term Panyar commonly known on the Coaft ? 


Can you give any information refpedting the treatment of leamen 
on board Slave Ihips ? 

It appears to me that they are far from being well treated on beard 
Slave Ihips. 

From what circumftancesdid you form that opinion ? 

From the many complaints which I received from feamen whilft 
I was on the coaft. 

Can you mention any particular inftances of the fort to which you 
allude ? 

Yes; one in particular refpedting a man of the name of John 
Bowden, who (warn from the Ihip Fiftier of Liverpool, Richard Ken¬ 
dal, Mafter, between two and three cables lengths, to the Nautilus, 
at a time when there were a number of lharks about the Ihip, to 
claim my proteftion from the ill ufagehehad received on board the 

Did you keep this failor on board your Ihip ? 

Mr. Kendal, the mafter of the Ihip he fwam from, requefted of 
me, in a letter, the next day, that 1 would return him the man, 
which was my wilh, but he politively refufed to go, giving it as his 
reafon, that if he returned he looked upon his life to be endangered; 

I therefore kept him on board the Nautilus, and entered him as one 
of her complement. 


[ *69 ] 

Did he ftay long on board the Nautilus, and how did he behave 

He continued with me in the Nautilus until (he was paid off, 
(he was entered in July 1787, and I was paid off in December 
1788,) and his general conduct was that of a diligent, willing, ac¬ 
tive feaman. 

Were there any other inftances of feamen fwimming, or en¬ 
deavouring to fwim, on board your vefiel, to efcape from Slave 
fhips ? 

Yes j one of the Brothers, of Liverpool, Jofeph Clark, I think, 
the mafter, belonging to the fame owners as the before-mentioned 
Chip, the Fifber, feveral of whofe crew jumped overboard, and 
lwam towards the Nautilus as fhe was paffing by under fail; two 
only reached the Nautilus ; the reft, I believe, regained their own 
Chip ; the major part of her crew had the day before taken a boat, 
and come on board the Nautilus, to complain of ill ufage; but 
I had returned them to their fhip, with an officer, to inquire into 
and redrefs their complaints; this happened alfo in the month of 
July 1787. 

Did you receive from feamen on board Slave (hips any applica¬ 
tions or letters complaining of ill ufage, and deflring you to pro¬ 
tect them from it, or to take them on board ? 

Yes; many. 

Do you believe that feamen are as ill ufed on board fuch African 
fhips as do not deal in Slaves, but in the natural productions of the 
country, as woods, gums, &c. ? 

I am inclined to think not. 

On what grounds do you reft this opinion ? 

From an inftance I had in the Iris, a (nip which traded in 
wood, ivory, and gum, from which 1 had no complaints ; but 
on the contrary, the beft accounts of the good treatment of the 
mafttr, and the healthinefs, cleanlinefs, and good order of his 

Were any of your officers on board this fhip, and did their re¬ 
port confirm this account ? 

Yes; feveral of them; and it was from them that I had the 

Was this fhip near vou for any time ? 

X x 

J cannot 

C >7° ] 

I cannot immediately afcertain the time; but I know it was 
feveral weeks. 

From what you have feen, do you think the African Slave 
Trade a nurfery for feamen ? 

I fhould fuppofe the contrary, as the feamen on board Slave 
/hips appear to be very fickly. 


To what caufes is this ficklinefs chiefly to be afcribed ? 

From their being very much expofed to the fun, rains, and dews, 
in fmall craft. * 

Would a trade with Africa, for her natural productions, be 
attended with the fame ill conferences to the health of the fea¬ 
men employed in conducting it ? 

As I fhould fuppofe they would not be liable to fo much un- 
pleafant and hard work, I fhould think not. 

Trom your experience, is the climate of Africa fatal to the lives 
of feamen on board fhips that are lying off the coaft, provided 
proper means are taken to keep them healthy, and provided they 
are not employed in fuch fervices as you have before-mentioned to 
be highly injurious to them ? 

I think a fhip’s company, with proper care, may be kept as 
healthy in Africa, at leafl: thofe parts that I have been upon, as in 
any other tropical climate.—I fpeak from the crew of the Nautilus; 
from which only one young man loft his life during my ftay in 
Sierra Leone, and which was occafioned by a carelefs°negkCt. 

Is not a greater number of people crowded together on board a 
Slave *fhip, than can be carried with a due regard to health or 
comfort ? 

I fhould think fo. 

What was the fize of your own fhip, and the number of fea¬ 
men you had on board ? 

She was about 320 tons, and fhe had on board her full peace 
complement of 100 men. 

Could you have flowed 4 or 500 people in your fhip, with 
a due regard to their health and comfort ? 

No; impoflible. 

Can you mention any fad in corroboration of this opinion ? 

It was as much as I could do to flow the complement of 


[ I 7 I ] 

l J c Nautilus, with any degree of comfort or convenience to 
themlelves; but upon my return to England, by the way of 
the Weft Indies, being ordered to take on board about 70 or 
80 invalids for England, the fliip was much crowded, and the 
company incommoded to a very great degree. 

. what ftate > i n general, were the forts on the coaft of Africa 
in thofe parts which you vifited ? * 

They appeared to me, in general, to be veiy much out of repair, 
and feme in a ruinous ftate; that at a place called Tantumquerry 
particularly fo, as the governor of it was twice obliged to apolo¬ 
gize to Commodore Thompfon for not faluting the king’s co- 
tours, left the concuffion of firing the guns might (hake down 
the caftle: this was their ftate in the years 1784 and 1785. 

Were not the Sierra Leone (ettlers landed in Africa at the mod 
improper feafon of the year ? 

Ye ®» ^ think fo; as they arrived there at the commencement of 
the rainy feafon. 

^Whcn in the Weft Indies, have you ever feen (eamen in a verv 
wretched and deftitute ftate ? 

. Yes J at Barbadoes I have feen feveral ftrolling about the ftreets 
in a begging ftate, apparently very fickly and deftitute; and I be- 
lieve the major part of the (eamen employed in the Slave Trade to 
Africa receive from ficknefs a great (hock to their conftitutions. 

When in the Weft Indies, did you often obferve the backs of 
the Negroes to bear indelible marks of the whip ? 

Yes; very often. 

What particular parts of the coaft of Africa did you vifit in the 
years 1784, 1785, and 1786? 

We touched at moft of the forts belonging to the En^ifli from 
Cape Appoloma to Accra j but I was on thore only at Commendu 
Cape Coaft, and Tantumquerry. 

What was the longeft (pace of time you were on (hore at each of 
thofe places ? 

I (lept at Commenda one night, at Cape Coaft two, but I was 
alhore at Tantumquerry only for a few hours. 

What parts of the continent of Africa did vo U ever vifit at anv 
• other time ? ' 3 


[ l l 1 ] 

Sierra Leone, and I have failed along the coaft of Africa from 
the Cape of Good Hope to Cape Negro, in the latitude of fix- 
teen degrees fouth, have anchored at many parts, and been afhore 
at feveral places; this is an unfrequented pait of the coalt, to 
which there is no trade. 

When you fpeak as to the manners, difpofitions, and capacities 
of the natives, to what part of Africa co you allude ? 

Principally to the inhabitants of Sierra Leone. 

What are the fpecies of gum, and what are the particular parts 
of Africa to which you alluded ? 

I believe there are leveral fpecies of gum in and about Sierra 
Leone, but the principal is the Gum Copal. 

Are not the French in the pofleflion of that part of Africa in 
which the Gum Senega is produced ? 

I cannot fpeak to any certainty ; but I believe they are. 

Do you know whether the Gum Copal, of which you fpeak, is 
in much eftimation, and what quantity of it is ufually imported 
into this country annually ? 

I have always underftood there was a great demand for it in this 
country, as the varnifh of the carriages is made from it; it is 
held in much eftimation as the beft: varnifh, and bears a high price 
even on the coaft; I think, if I recollect, to the value of two 
{hillings, or two (hillings and fix pence a pound j but the quan¬ 
tity imported into this country I do not know. 

Can you inform the Committee how many (hips are employed, 
one yer with another, in the importation of the productions of the 
loil and manufactures of Africa into this country ? 

No; I cannot. 

Have you fufficient knowledge of the quantities of ivory, dying 
wood, and other productions of Africa (which you have mentioned) 
as are imported annually into this country, fo as to be able to fay 
whether the quantity of each fo imported is fuppofed to be equal 
to the demand; or whether the quantity imported can be increafed 
with a probable profpect of a reafonable profit to the importers ? 

No; I have not. 

What is the fpace in breadth allowed on board a man of war 
for the hanging up of each feaman’s hammock? 


[ i73 J 

From eighteen inches to two feet, according to the room which 
vve can fpare. 

Do you recollect the number of the Free Negroes which were 
fent out to Sierra Leone under your convoy ? 

I beiieve about 380; but I do not recoiled!—a great many 
more were embarked in the River Thames; but fome of them 
found means to get afhore, and others died. 

What was the behaviour of thefe Free Negroes upon their arrival 
at Sierra Leone, with refpedt to their difpofition to work, and en¬ 
deavours to procure a maintenance for themfelves ? 

In general very bad; the major part of them were a worthlefs, 
lawlefs vicious, drunken fet of people, and it was with the utmoft 
difficulty that I could perfuade them to eredt a covering for thcm- 
felves from the inclemency of the weather; I had no authority or 
powers to compel them; a few only of them, (who poffeffied fome 
induftry, which they ufed in cultivating the land,) if they were 
lupported and encouraged, I think had a profpedt of doing well. 

»Vas not their behaviour to Mr. Irvin (who went out with 
them as their director) fuch as induced him to take the refolution 
of quitting them, and not fettling with them at Sierra Leone? 

Mr. Irvin, before he died, publifhed his refolution of quitting 
them, and gave their ill-behaviour to him as a reafon for fo 
doing; but I am inclined to think that Mr. Irvin had never any 
intention to fettle there with them; nor did he appear to me to be 
a man at all calculated to eftablifh an infant colony. 

But was not their behaviour to him fuch as in your iudg- 
tnent juftified his refolution of quitting them ? 

Certainly ; and their general behaviour was fuch as would have 

juftihed every European who went out with them in taking the 
fame ftep. ® 

Did they fhew any attention or refpedl to the furgeon or cler¬ 
gyman that went out with them ? 

None; on the contrary, they could not be perfuaded to build 
the clergyman a habitation or any place of public worfhip, which 
was Obliged to be performed, whilft I ftaid, under a large tree, 
frequently incommoded by rain; and at my departure the clergy* 
man was obliged to take up his abode with the factor of Bens 
( Ifland, a great diftance from them up the River. 

F y Are 

t *74 ] 

Are you acquainted with the previous fituation of the greater 
part of thofe Negroes whom you conveyed as before mentioned ? 

Some of them I believe had occupations which they exercifed 
in this country ; but the generality of them were, I believe, va¬ 
grants who infefted the ftreets of London. 

Do not you apprehend that their behaviour, and the iflue of 
that expedition, was fuch as might reafonably be expedted from 
the character and previous fituation of the majority of thofe per- 

As they were fent out without any laws to govern them, or 
power to keep them in any order, I certainly think fo. 

Are you of opinion, that from their condudt or from the iflue 
of this adventure, any conclufions can be fairly drawn as to the 
probability, or otherwife, of the fuccefs of a colony which fhould 
be eftabliflud on that coaft by perfons of different character, and 
under proper and well enforced regulations ? 

I think a colony on that part of the coaft may certainly be efta- 
blifhed by perfons of the latter defeription, and with every pro- 
fpedt of fuccefs, as it is a very fine fertile country, well wooded, 
and well watered, and the river forms a fafe and commodious 
port for (hipping. 

What proportion of a man of war’s crew are in their ham¬ 
mocks at the fame time ? 

At fea, very few more than half, as (hips are generally at watch 
and watch. 

What is the ufual height of fhips of war between decks ? 

Ships differ very much, from five feet four or five, to five feet 
ten inches. 

Are you acquainted with the fituation in which Slaves are con¬ 
fined between the decks of a Guineaman ? 

No; not at all j I feldom or ever vifited any of them, as my 
difguft always got the better of my curiofity. 

Did you ever obferve on board a man of war, fuch circum- 
ftances as created in you that difguft of which you have juft 

Noj never. 



t 175 ] 

bo you apprehend that any kind of fair comparifon can be 
formed between the fituation in which you know feamen to be 
on bosrd a man of war, and that in which you have been informed 
Slaves are on board a Guineaman ? 

Certainly not, and I fliould hope no perfon would be illiberal 
enough to draw one. 

Do you know whether fpices of any kind grow fpontaneoully 
on any of thofe parts of the Coaft of Africa which you have 
vifited ? 

The cardamum is in great plenty; I have feen fome black pep-*, 
per; red peppers of many fpecies are in abundance ; and I have 
been told that there are wild nutmegs; the ifland of Saint Thomas* 
belonging to the Portuguefe, abounds in cinnamon, which grows 
fpontaneoufly, but I never faw any on the continent of Africa, 
although I think it is equally calculated to produce it; I may alfo 
add, that wild grapes are in great plenty at Sierra Leone 
(although the fruit is not very palatable), and that I planted a few 
cuttings of vines brought from Tenerifle, which thrived very 

A'c you certain whether it was cinnamon or cafiia that you 
faw at the ifland of Saint Thomas ? 

I am not competent to diflinguifh. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Sabbatiy 15 0 die Mali 1790. 

Captain JOHN HILLS, of the Royal Navy, called in; and 


Were you ever in Africa ? 

I was. 

In what parts, at what time, and in what fituation ? 

At Goree, in the River Gambia, and as commander of His Ma- 


t 176 ] 

jetty’s floop Wafp—the latter end of the year 1781, and the be¬ 
ginning of 1782, to the beft of my recollection. 

During the time of your flay at Goree, were you acquainted with 
any of the natives who were intelligent men, and capable of giv¬ 
ing you information ? 6 

There was a perlon at a village called Dacard, named Moriel, 
who was a high prieft, and was a very intelligent man. 

During your ft ay, did you obferve any thing concerning the 
mode of obtaining Slaves ? ** 

I faw them of an evening very frequently go out in war dreffes, 
as I underftoodj to obtain Slaves. 

Did you make any enquiry concerning the occafion of the ap¬ 
pearance of thefe armed men ? 

Yes; and found that they were employed to get Slaves for the 
king of Darnel, and to fell to merchants—I apprehend on his 
account. There were fome fmugglers or pirates, or Whatever you 
pleafe to call them, who had obtained one improperly, and 
brought him on board the Zephyr, with his hands tied behind 
him, with a view of difpofing of him to me—I informed them, 
we were not a trading fhip, and could not fuffer him to remain 
in that ftate I had him reieafed from his confinement, and fed, 
and defired they would take him out of the (hip again—they re- 
quefted he might ftay there till morning, and they would carry 
him over to governor Wall at Goree, who would take him— 
the next morning they came for him, and the man, when he got 
into the canoe, jumped overboard, in order to make his efcape 
from them, which he did by diving frequently, till he gained the 
ttiore, where he was refeued by the natives of the village of Da¬ 
card, under the direction of the aforefaid Moriel. 

Did you fee this man after his releafe ? 

I faw him the fame evening, as I was coming to my boat td 
go on hoard, with a knife in one hand, and a very fharp- 
pointed horn in the other, coming to me with a vaft deal of 

expreffion in his countenance, expreffing his gratitude for his re¬ 

Did you ever fee any of the natives who had been brought into 
the huts with a view to their being fold for Slaves ? 

I have feen them in the huts tied back to back, at feveral of 
then: houfes. 



[ 177 3 

Was any particular reafon given to you for the parties being 
lent out to get Slaves ? 

I was informed by one of them, that the king was very poor, 
not having received his ufual prefents, and it was done on his 

* Are there, in the villages of the country bordering on Goree, 
officers ftationed on the part of the king to receive dues, cuf- 
toms, &c. ? 

At Dacard, where we watered and provifioned, there was a per- 
fon who received the dues—they called him Captain Ganna. 

Did this Ganna countenance the pradice of feizing the natives 
for Slaves in the manner before related ? 

He was the very perfon who brought the roan before defcribed 
by me. 

Was this reprefented to you to be a common mode of pro¬ 
ceeding on his part, and was it condemned by any other per¬ 
fon ? 

Moriel, who was his brother, lield it in very high indignation; 
and there had very near been a quarrel between the two villages 
on that account; but Ganna was a man of bad character, and I 
underftood this was his pradice frequently. 

Were both thefe perfons fubjeds of the king of Darnel, and 
in refpedable fituations under him ? 

They were both fubjeds of the king of Darnel; both were 
chiefs of villages, Moriel a refpedable charader, the other a 
very bad one. 

Do the natives in this part of the country generally go 
armed ? 

Always with a knife or fpear of fome kind, or a mulketj they 
all carry fome weapon. 

What did you apprehend to be the reafon of this ? 

I imagine they were afraid of being taken. 


When you were in the river Gambia, did any incident occur, 
which led you to believe kidnapping was pradtfed in that part of 
the country ? 

There did; wanting fervants on board the (hip, I exprefied a 
• wifh to have fome volunteers; a Black pilot, who was in the 
boat with me founding, called to two boys who were on the fhore 

. Z z with 

[ i7« ] 

with bafkets of fhallots on their head?, and afked me if they 
would do, in wh ch cafe he would take them off, and bring 
them to me ; this I declined. 

Was this reprefented by the perfon who made the propofal to 
you as being an unufual mode of proceeding? 

From the eafe with which he did it, I conclude it was a cuf- 
tomary thing. 

Did he make any remark on your refufing to clofe with his 
offer ? 

Yes } that the merchants (hips would not refufe it. 

M m 4 

Was you on Ihore when you failed up the Gambia ? 

I was not; I was advifed by no means to go on Ihore by the 
merchants who were there, for fear of being taken by the native?, 
as they owed us a grudge for fome injuries they had received from 
the Englifh. 

Did you, while in the Gambia, fee any perfon of diftindion 
who mentioned his having been formerly carried off the Coaft ? 

There was a man, who called himfelf the brother of a prince, 
that had been carried to the Weft Indies, either in a Liverpool 
or Briftol Ihip, I do not recoiled: which, who, on reprefenting 
his cafe to the governor, had him fent to Europe. 

Did you purchafe a boy for your own fervice on that part of the 
coaft ? 

Yes; I did ; and the lieutenant purchafed another; we were 
both in want of fervants; they were fpared as a great favour from 
Jhe merchants to us. 

t Can you give any account of the manner in which either or 
both of them had been made Slaves ? 

The one who was my fervant was taken in the night, and car¬ 
ried away from his father’s houfo, where a fkirmifh had happened, 
in which Ins father and mother, I believe he faid, were both killed, 
but one I perfedly well rememLer j the fate of the other I know 
nothing of. 

Did you underftand from the boy, whether any other inhabitants 
of the village had been furprized at the fame time ? 

Yes ; I underftood there were a great many killed at the time, 
and fome taken. 


[ 179 1 

What opinion did you form of the capacity of the natives of 
Africa ? 

There were feveral of them that fpoke exceeding good French 
and Englifli, and I had a letter from one man in the river Gam¬ 
bia very well written in the French language. 

Did they appear to poffefs the focial affections in as (Irong a 
degree as the inhabitants of other countries in the fame (late of 
fociety ? 

I few an inftance of one man whofe child was to he buried, who 
could not Hand the (hock; he requeued to come on board, and 
to remain on board the Zephyr till the ceremony was over, dur¬ 
ing which time he (hewed much grief and agitation of mind. 

Did any thing fall under your notice, which led you to form 
any conclufion refpeCting the lofs of feamen on board the Slave 
(hips ? 

I was frequently applied to by the merchants to give them af- 
fiftance of people, owing to deaths and ficknefs among them. 

What was the lofs of feamen on board your (hip ? 

I did not lofe a fingle man. 

Is the corn in that part of Africa where you have been, com¬ 
monly cultivated by the men or the women ? 

1 never few the women at work in the fields, but I have fre¬ 
quently feen the men. 

Where did you fee the men working ? 

In the neighbourhood of Dacard. 

What other opportunities had you of feeing the men work ? 

*• I have feen them drefs their corn in a large hole, by cutting it to 
pieces with (harp inftruments on (laves; I have alfo feen them 
at their common manufactory of cotton cloths by the help of their 

Did you fee them cultivating the ground for railing the pro¬ 

Yesj I did,—in the neighbourhood of Dacard. 

Did you fee them any where elfe? 

No—I did not. 

• Do 

[ i8o ] 

Do you know whether the two boys who where on fliore were 
free or Slaves, or whofe property they were ? 

* I apprehend they were free, from the mode in which the pilot 
addreficd himfelf to me in regard to them. 

Do you fpeak from conjecture ? 

Yes; I cerrainly do fpeak from conjefture, conveyed to me 
from the winking of the pilot, implying that it was an illicit 
thing,—a fmuggled matter. 

From what country did the boy come from that you pur- / 
chafed ? 

I think it was Mandingo. 

By whom was the village attacked, and by what power was 
he taken ? 

I cannot exactly fay, but he was brought to a place called 
Sicca, in the river Gambia. 

Do you know who brought him ? 

No; I do not. 

Was Ganna a Maraboo ? 

He’was not, as I underftood. 

Did you enquire the condition of the perfon who was brought 
to you with his hands tied ? 6 

I was informed his brother was a great man in the village he 
was taken from. . 6 

Was any crime alledged againft him ? 

' I did not hear of any; I Ihould apprehend not; becaule the 
next day he returned to his own village. 

Did you make an acknowledgment to the kino- of Daniel for 
the wood and water which your fliiD had ? 

We always did; there was a fixed price for every boat landing. 

Of what nation were thofe fiiips that applied to you ? 


Do you attribute the healthy ftate of your crew, whilft in 

Africa, to the climate, or to any particular medical precautions 
taken by you ? 

To medical precautions.-—The bark which we were allowed, 

1 3 with 

[ i8i ) 

with Madeira wine for that purpofe was always given to them 
when they went on fhore, and when they returned on board. 

Are the natives of that part of Africa where you have been 
of an induftrious or indolent difpofition? 

In the kindom of Darnel they appear to be very lazy and 
idle; in the river Gambia I had no opportunity of landing to 
lee their induftry. 

From thofe you did fee, are you of opinion that they could 
be induced by any encouragement to fuch a courfe of induftry 
as to manufacture articles of their own country produce, in fuch 
a way as to become articles of commerce? 

I do not think very eafily. 

How long in the whole were you in Africa, from the time 
©f your arrival till your quitting it ? 

Near fix months. 

How many men had you on board the Zephyr ? 

Ninety was our complement j—and we had about ninety on 
board on an average. 

Whereabouts was the tonnage of your {hip? 

About 200 tons. 

Suppofing your {hip to have had on board 300 or 400 per- 
fons, do you think fimilar precautions to thofe which you ufed 
for the prefervation of the health of your crew would have 
been effectual to that purpofe in their cafe ? 

The precautions which we ufed were to guard a gain ft the nox¬ 
ious vapours of the land;—and I conceive that to be more of a 
medical queftion than I am capable of judging. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Veneris , 14. 0 die Mali 1790. 

G EORGE BAILLIE, Efquire, called in; and examined. 

Have you ever refided on the continent of North America? 

I did, for twenty* five years. 

3 A 


t 18* I 

In what part of that continent ? 

In South Carolina and Georgia. 

In what way of life ? 

As a merchant for a confiderable number of years; afterwards 
I commenced planter, and held an office as Commifiary General 
.of Georgia. 

When you refided in America, did any vefiels arrive with 
Slaves immediately from the Coaft of Africa, at or near the 
place of your refidence ? 

There did many vefiels arrive, during my refidence in Ame¬ 
rica, at the places where 1 refided, which were Charles Town 
and Savannah, with cargoes of Slaves direCtly from the Coaft of 

Had you any opportunity of obferving the general appearance 
of the crews of thefe ffiips, and fo far as you had, were they 
healthy, or otherwife ? 

I had many opportunities of feeing the crews of thofe ffiips, 
and from the general appearance of the common feamen, they 
feemed to have received great injury in their health, as might be 
feen from their fqualid countenances, and ulcerate I limbs. 

What was the ordinary mode of conducting the fales of the 
African cargoes in your time ? 

The common mode of conducting lhem was by giving public 
notice of the day appointed for the public fale, fome days before 
its commencement, which generally brought together a confider¬ 
able number of buyers; the Slaves were then placed in a clofe 
yard, ranged in order for fale; the gates being ffiut immediately 
before the fale commenced, a great gun was fired, and the pur- 
chafers with their adherents and affiltants, ruffied into the yard 
with great violence, and laid hold of the molt healthy and good 
looking Slaves, which parcels they afterwards picked and culled 
to their mind; they were immediately purchafed, and huriied out 
of the yard; fo that in a few hours afterwards there remained 
none but thofe who were called the refufe Slaves; whofe health had 
been injured in the voyage, generally, as I conceived, proceeding 
from too cramped a fituation and confined air on board of the 
ffiips; thofe Slaves were afterwards fold at a very great under 


For what number of hours in a day were the Slaves ufually 
worked in the American plantations ? 

There were no fixed number of hours for their labour; they 
were always worked in what is called talk work; the overfeer 
upon the plantations had dirediions to roufe them early in the 
morning, and place them at their work; that work, >1 fay, tonfift- 
ing of talk work, was generally a quarter of an acre of land to 
each perfon, when it was in an eafy ftate of cultivation; if other- 
wife, it was the overfeers duty to appropriate the hardeft part of 
the labour to the ftrongeft people, and vice vcrfa, to give the . 
weaker hands a lighter work; and indeed, when the ground was 
uncommonly foul, it was common to leflen the piece of land 
confiderably ; it was a general practice amongft the Negroes them- 
felves, when they found their companions could not finifh their 
work, and they had compleated theirs, to give them aid in com- 
pleating what they could not fo foon accomplifh; by which 
means they generally were all able to leave the field at one time, 
and pretty early in the afternoon; at which time their labour 
ceafed for the day. 

Is it meant, that they were at liberty to ufe the reft of the day 
as they plea fed ? 

They were at perfedl liberty to difpofe of the latter part of the 
day as they thought proper. 

What other time had they for relaxation ? 

None other except Sunday and a few holidays at Chriftmas. 

Was Sunday a day of entire recefs from labour to the Slaves, 
or did they on that day cultivate provifions for their own fub- 
fiftence P 

Sunday was entirely at their own difpofal; and they might 
make ufe of their time in any manner they thought proper. 

How in general were the Slaves fed in the province before 
alluded to; deferibe the manner of feeding them, and fpecify the 
quantity of food ? 

Each grown perfon, male and female, received weekly either 
a peck of Indian corn, or a bufhel of potatoes, or a peck of clean 
rice; and their children, a quantity of grain or potatoes, in pro¬ 
portion to their age. 

What might be about the weight of a peck of Indian corn or 
of a bufhel of potatoes refpedtively ? 

A peck 

[ I «4 3 

A peck of corn might be about 141b.; a peck of rice much 
about the fame weight, and a bufhel of potatoes would weigh 
near 40 lb. 

Befides this allowance, had the Slaves any ground which they 
were allowed to cultivate for themfelves ? 

It was a general practice to allot them as much ground as thev 
chofe to cultivate for their own particular ufe, the produCt of 
which they had the entire difpofal of themfelves. 

How were the Slaves in general cloathed ? 

Each man received, at the commencement of winter, a coat, a 
waiftcoa’', a pair of breeches, and a pair of boots made of a cloth 
called white plains, which is manufactured at Shrewfbury; they 
alfo received a milled worded cap, and a pair of ftrong fhoesj 
in the fummer it was common to give them a fhirt, and a pair of 
trowfers, made of a linen called Ofnaburg; the women were 
cloathed much in the fame manner, excepting the boots; and 
the children received each a long warm wrapper or gown, fo as 
to cover them down to the heels; they had alfo allowed them 
every fecond year, a ftrong, warm, duffel blanket. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Sabbati , 15 0 die Mail 1790. 

(J EORGE BAILLIE, Efquire, called in; and fur¬ 
ther examined. 

Was it ufual on every plantation to have a defeription of offi¬ 
cers called overfeers and drivers ? 

Yes; it was. 

Will you deferibe the nature of their refpeCtive offices ? 

The overfecr had a general fuperintendance of all matters upon 
the plantation; the driver being his deputy, of courfe aCtcd 
under his direction. \ 



C <85 ] 

\Vhat number of Negroes was commonly under the fuperin- 
tendance of one overfeer, and one driver ? 

The number of Negroes generally placed under the fuperinten- 
dance of one overfeer, and one driver, was from thirty-two to 
thirty-five working hands. 

Have you ever feen Negroes in America with marks of violence 
on their perfons ? 

I have undoubtedly feen them with marks upon their perfons, 
but thefe inftances were not very frequent, and when they were 
in the poffefiion of an humane mafter feldom met with. 

Was it ufual for the drivers to whip the Slaves through their 
day’s work in the field ? 

That was feldom or never done; becaufe, as they worked them 
talk work, it was impoflible for an overfeer to know until towards 
the clofe of the day, whether a Slave would finifti his tafk or not; 
and it was always thought time enough to punifh them when they 
deferved it from their negledt. 

Have you frequently feen the SLves in America, working with 
clogs on their legs, or in chains ? 

I have at times feen them with clogs on their legs, though 
thefe inftances are very rare; but never with chains. 

Was the fupply of the gangs, by rearing children, much at¬ 
tended to in America ? 

Very much. 

Were pregnant women exempted from the lafh ? 

They were moft certainly exempted from it; and had any 
man been known to whip a woman in that fituation, he would 
hardly have ventured to ftievv his face in public again. 

What care in general was taken of pregnant women, and of 
the new born infants? 

Pregnant women were always exempted from labour a confi- 
derable length of time before their lying-in; child-bed linen of 
a coarfe kind was provided for them, and fufficient care taken of 
them during their lying-in; and the child, when born, properly 
clothed and taken care of. 

Were the children reared in as large a proportion as infants in 
other countries ? 

3 B 

I believe 

C i86 ] 

I believe upon the whole they are raifed in as great a propor¬ 
tion as the children in Europe, when they are in healthy fitua- 

Was the tetanus, or locked jaw, often fatal to the infant chil¬ 
dren ? 

That is a diforder which I never faw or heard of amongft them 
in that country. 

What were the principal productions of the countries you 
have been fpeaking of f 

The principal productions of the countries I have been fpeak¬ 
ing of, were rice, indigo, and lumber. 

Will you defcribe the mode of cultivating rice ? 

The mode of cultivating rice is, in the firft inftance, to drain 
fwampy lands, and to bank them fo as to prevent water from 
lodging upon them; when they are effectually drained, and 
perfectly dry, the rice land is then with a hoe formed into 
trenches from eighteen to twenty inches diftance, in ftrait lines, 
in which trenches the rice is fowed, one bufhel or five pecks 
to an acre; when the rice fprings up it is carefully attended to, 
and the grafs and weeds taken from it; when it arrives to the 
height of about three feet, and being perfectly clean, the flood¬ 
gates are opened, and water is fuffered to pafs upon it, which 
may generally be a foot in depth j it remains in that ftate until 
the rice becomes completely ripe, at which time the water 
is drawn from it, and after the ground becomes a little 
dry, the rice is cut down with a fickle, and cocked up in the 
held as corn in general is j after ftanding fome little time there, 
it is carried into the barn yard, and formed into flacks, as corn 
is done in Europe. 

At what part of the year is it that the rice is kept under 
water ? 

From about the 20th of June to the firft week in Septem¬ 

To follow the rice through the reft of its procefs, it is 
thrafhed in the fame manner as European grain, and after being 
winnowed, it is put through wooden mills that are cut into par¬ 
ticular fhapes, which take from it the rough or external coat, 
after which it is put into mortars, which are worked by a horfe 
or water mill, and there pounded or beat, fo as to diveft it of 
an inner fkin, and to leave it in that white ftate that you fee it 

2 when 

[ >87 ] 

when brought to Europe; and, upon being fifted, it is then put 
into calks, as fit for exportation. 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies ? 

1 have. 

When did you go there, and to what ifland or iflands ? 

I went there in Oftober or November 1777, to the Ifland of 
Jamaica, and the Bahama Iflands, having been obliged to leave 
the continent in confequence of the difputes that prevailed there* 
I firft landed in Providence, and went from thence to Jamaica 

How long did you ftay in Jamaica ? 

Several months. 

On your firft opportunities of obferving the ftate of the Slaves 
in Jamaica, and their general appearance, what were the impref- 
fions excited in your mind ? 

Having at that time very little to do, I went from curiofity to 
fee various plantations, and to draw a kind of comparifon between 
their mode of management and that of the Continent. I muft 
confefs, that I differed in opinion with feveral of the gentlemen who 
were planters, in their manner of working their Slaves, as I 
thought their method rather ferved to deprefs the fpirits of the 
people, and their appearance in general was by no means favour¬ 
able j I obferved, that they worked with but very fhort intermif- 
fions throughout the whole day, from fun-rife to fun-fet, I may 
fay j and that they were conftantly followed by drivers, who 
forced the weak to keep up with the ftrong, as far as poflible} 
their labour, I fay, never clofing till the day ceafed. I had an op¬ 
portunity of being upon one eftate in particular, which was under 
the dire ft ion of a particular friend of mine j by which means I 
had the privilege of looking at their books, and examining into 
any matter I thought proper, and to my utter furprize, I law in 
their daily occurrences, that the Negroes were on a Sunday turned 
out as regularly as any other day in the week, to work in what 
was called their own grounds ; but it appeared, that the produds 
of thofe grounds were appropriated to the fubfiftence of the Ne¬ 
groes, and not to be applied to their own benefit or emolument, 
unlefs perhaps there might be a furplus of food ; how far that fur- 
plus was applied to their benefit, I am not perfectly clear. 


[ >88 ] 

\/as there any remarkable difference in the general appearance 
of Field Negroes, and of the Slaves in the towns ? 

Yes j I think I could perceive a confiderable difference; becaufe 
• the people of the towns were much better fed, and much better 
cloathed, and did not undergo fuch hard labour; I believe that 
nvght be the reafon of it. 

Did you remark any difference in point of family comforts and 
attachments between the Field Slaves in the Weft Indies and 
in America? deferibe their fituation in both places, in thefe 

The fituation of the Slaves upon the Continent, where a man 
has taken to himfelf a wife, was generally very comfortable, as 
they had a houfe and ground to themfelves, where they could raife 
many little neceflaries; and they took great pleafure in raifing 
their children, for whom they feemed to have the moft fincere 
attachment. I muft confefs, that I did not think the Slaves in 
the Weft Indies feemed to enjoy the fame degree of comfort that 
they did in that refpedt; as I apprehended it was not fo much 
the wifh of the planters of that country to increafe the number of 
Slaves by births as it appeared to be upon the Continent. 

Did you ever hear it argued in America, or the Weft Indies, 
whether it was more advantageous to recruit the gangs of Slaves 
by births, or by African Slaves to be worked out, and their lofs 
fupplied by frefh importations ? 

I do not think that, upon the Continent, any gentlemen would 
have fuggefted fuch a matter. I have in companies in the Weft 
Indies (I do not think they were very ferious in the bufinefs nei¬ 
ther—it is a very invidious thing) heard them fay, that after giv¬ 
ing a certain price for a Negro, if he worked a certain length of 
time, there would be no great lofs fuftained by his death with 
refpedt to property; but I believe they are too humane to wifh a 
man to die. 

Were the Slaves in America as much whipped as in the Weft 
Indies ? 

Excepting the circumftance of their not being driven fo much 
through the day, I believe that the punifhments on the Con- 
tinent were as fevere as thoie in the Weft Indies* 



[ ^9 1 

Were the proprietors of eftates in America, or in the Weft In¬ 
dies, more generally refident on their own plantations ? 

The proprietors of eftates upon the continent of America re- 
fided greatly upon their eftates, almoft entirely fo; but in the 
Weft Indies, from what obfervation I could make, the gentlemen 
of confiderable eftates in Jamaica appeared moftly to live in 

Did you obferve any difference between the fituation ard com¬ 
fort of the American and Weft Indian Slaves refulting from this 
circumftance ? 

It appeared to me, that where a proprietor lived upon his 
eftates, the Slaves had a chance of meeting with better treatment 
by that means. 

Did your own Slaves in America fhew any great indifpofition 
to moral inftrudtion or improvement ? 

Very far from it; on the contrary, feveral of them took every 
ftep in their power to be taught to read; and on the Sundays 
many of them went regularly to church, which I always en¬ 
couraged them to do; and on the evenings they very often aflem- 
bled in a houfe amongft themfelves, where they had a kind of re¬ 
gular worfhip. 


What were the fteps they took to be taught to read, alluded to 
in your laft anfwer ? 

# * hey, with their own money, purchafed fpelling books; and 
with the affiftance of fome of the other Negroes that could read, 
fome of them came to read tolerably well. 

How did the Slaves in America difpofe of the produce of their 
own ground? 

When they were any where near a town, they regularly carried 
it to market there; fometimes their mafter ufed to purchafe it 
of them; or little huckftering veflels ufed to go through the 
rivers and creeks, carrying proper neceftaries for the Slaves, 
which they ufed to barter for their produce, and poultry and 

Were there frequent inftances of their faving money enough to 
buy out their own freedom ? 

I did know feveral inftances of that kind that occured in the 

3 C towns j 

[ *9° ] 

towns; but the Slaves in the country never did, or could come at 
fo much property as to enable them to do fo. 

And then the Witnefs was diredted to withdraw. 

Lunce^ 17 0 die Maii 1790. 

G EORGE B AIL LIE, Efquire, called in j and further ex¬ 

Are free Negroes in America allowed to purchafe and poflefs 
land ? 

Free Negroes in America are allowed to poflefs every fpecies of 
perfonal property, but land I think they are not allowed to poflefs; 
I am not very clear, but I think not. 

Did the health of the Negroes in America appear to be better 
in the fummer or in the winter ? 

The Negroes during the fummer enjoyed their healths much 
better than in the winter. 

You have ftated, “ that on your firft opportunities of obferving 
«* the ftate of blaves in Jamaica, their appearance in general was 
“ by no means favourablein what refpedls did their appearance 
ftrike you as unfavourable? 

The field Negroes in Jamaica appeared to me to be worn down 
with extreme labour, and being conftantly prefled upon through 
the day by the drivers. 

Did you find that the Negroes in Jamaica fuffered as much 
from difeafes as in America ? 

1 am of opinion that the climate of Jamaica, in every refpeft, 
was much more favourable to the confiitutions of Negroes than 
the continent of America, and from thence they were fubjedl to 
fewer diforders; I am alfo of opinion that many of their com¬ 
plaints proceeded from extreme fatigue, and that a little reft gene¬ 
rally reftored them, without any medicine being neceflary. 



t *9* 3 

What were the cl ief diforders to which the Negroes were 
lubject in America ? 

The Negroes upon the continent, in the winter feafon, were 
extremely lubjeCt to pleurifies and peripneumonies, and fometimes 
the dyfentery*, in the fummer they were rarely fo, comparatively 
fpcaking to their corfiplaims in winter. 

Did you obferve any thing remarkable concerning the number 
of domeftics kept by perfons refident in Jamaica ? 

The families in Jamaica generally had a very Cortfidcrablc num¬ 
ber of domeftic fervants about them ; when compared to the num¬ 
ber generally employed in Europe, confiderably more. 

What opinion have you formed of the capacity and difpofition 
of Negroes ? 

My opinion of their capacity is fuch, that I think them per¬ 
fectly capable of being bred to any mechanical profeffion. I have 
known many inftances, and amongft others fome of my own 
Slaves, who almoft naturally became, and without inftruCtion, 
good common houfe carpenters and coopers.—I may mention one 
in fiance in particular of an African Negro lad whom I purchafed 5 
and he of himfelf without any inftruCtion, but juft feeing carpen¬ 
ters at work, and making ufe of tools at times himfelf, became fo 
good a carpenter, that he could at any time, of his own ac¬ 
cord, frame and build any kind of common houfe; and alfb 
build boats for the ufe of my plantation. I have known alio 
many filverfmiths, blackfmiths, taylors, and Ihip carpenters, and 
in Ihort every other profeflion that was neceflary.—A mercantile 
houfe, with whom 1 was particularly acquainted, were poflefled 
of a number of Black Ihip carpenters and blackfmiths, who, by 
the fuperintendance of two or three White Men, built Ihips of 
400 tons burthen, which Ihips, after being loaded with a cargo 
of rice, were fent to the River Thames, and fold for upwards 

Did you ever obferve in Negroes any remarkable difinclination 
to labour ? 

By no means; there might be fome few inftances of a 
Worthlefs fellow amongft them; but upon the whole they were 
always very willing to work. 

*v»« f r- '• 

IJ>id Negroes appear to you to poflefs the focial affedtions, in as 
ftrong a degree as the natives of other countries ? * ‘ 

I have feen many inftances of very tender and affectionate pa* 

1 1 1 rents. 

t 192 ] 

rents, and of their being poffcffed of every focial idea; I may rive 

d^nlv lXf T rP ar ' icular . of a Slave of my own, who L- 
denly loft a fon by being drowned; he was fo much affedted bv it 

lerabfe dlegrS any m °" ths befurc hc rccovered ^is fpirits in any to- 

iir by their ma(iers ’ wcre ,hev s ra " fu| “ d 

wJn V 1 t0 / r ° m ex P erience » as every Slave that ever I 

was poffeffd of /hewed to me a very firm and fteady attachment 
and were fully grateful for every favour (hewn them. * 

& d -T nd T" thc American Negroes fo much 

as to entruit them with arms ? 

During the memorable fiege of Savannah, I and another gentle- 
man were poftefled of rice eftates upon an Ifland called Hutchin¬ 
s' 1 s Ifland, diredtly oppofite the town of Savannah; at that time 
there was a confidence quantity of grain and forage upon the 
ifland ; the commander in chief knowing how neceffary it might 
be to protea that gram and forage for the ufe of the troops, gf ve 
diredhons to arm the Male Slaves upon the Ifland, and fent feveral 

French ^f^ ^ U f ° n ’ ,f f ° Und neceffar yi foon after that a 
French frigate of 34 guns came up the river, and anchored 

diredly at the back of my eftate, with an intention to batter the 

works of the town from thence, and landed fome troops upon the 

Ifland, with the fuppofed intention of deftroying the bams and 

t l 2 T u T S aV ?’ * mon g ft others, behaved with fo much 
/pint that they beat off the French troopsj and they never at- 
tempted to land again, fo far as I knew. 

So far as you have had an opportunity of judging, is the 
cuhwation of cotton and coffee much eafier labour than that of 

lam perfectly fatisfied that the cultivation of either cotton or 
coffee, is in every refpedt much eafier than that of fugar. 

Did you ever know an inftance in America of a Negroe’s com 
mitting the adt of filicide ? S Com 

I have known an inftance, and one in my own eftate in particu¬ 
lar, who (amongft a purchafe of fome others that I made) appeared 
to be a man of about 35 years of age, and of a very fteady difpo- 

if WaS br ° Ught into the field durin S *e harvS, 
whilft the other Slaves were cheerfully at work in reaping, and 

I myfelf put a reaping hook into his hand, at the fame time 


t >93 1 

Shewing him how to manage it; he foon afterwards difappeared, 
and was not to be heard of for feveral days, until at lad the 
birds called turkey budards were feen hovering about a thicket, 
and upon examination he was there found hanging to a tree; as 
this man had received no degree of harfh treatment, and did not 
lee the Negr. es employed at extreme hard work, I conceived that 
his reafons for being guilty of the adt of fuicide proceeded from 
a difpofition of mind that could not brook the idea of flavery. 

In the different edates in South Carolina and Georgia, which 
you have feen, was it ufual to find a number of healthy thriving 
children ? 

Upon almod every edate it was common to fee great numbers 
of very healthy thriving children, who very foon became ufeful 
in fome fhape or other, and always made the bed and mod valua¬ 
ble Slaves. 

What was commonly edeemed the value of a new-born infant, 
in that part of America ? 

A child, foon after being born, was held in value equal to £. 5 
derling money of Great Britain. 

Was field labour confidered as degrading to free Negroes or 
Mulattoes in America and Jamaica ? 

Field labour upon the Continent of America was by no means 
held degrading to either the Mulatto or free Negro, nor do I 
think it would have been held as degrading in Jamaica. 

Did free Negroes and Mulattoes work in the field in America 
and Jamaica ? 

Free Negroes and Mulattoes upon the Continent of America 
did mod certainly work in the field for their own benefit; with 
refpedt to the other part of the quedion, I cannot anfwer pofi- 

Of what country are you a native ? 

Of Scotland. 

To what bufinefs or profeflion were you bred? 

I was bred a merchant. 

In what year did you fird go to North America ? 

In April 1756. 

3 D 


[ *94 ] 

To what part of North America ? 

South Carolina. 

To what place in Carolina? 

Charles Town. 

Upon your arrival there, did you immediately, or how foon 
afterwards, commence merchant ? 

I commenced merchant from the moment of my arrival. 

Did you carry on trade by yourfelf, or with a partner or part¬ 
ners ? 

I carried on trade with a partner. 

What was his name ? 

Andrew Robertfon. 

To what country did you trade, and in what commodities ? 

I traded to Great Britain and the Weft Indies; I carried on a 
very confiderable trade alfo to Mobile, and with the Creek, Che¬ 
rokee, and Chadtavv Indians. 

What year did you firft commence planter ? 

In the beginning of the year 1767. 

Did you continue to carry on trade after you commenced 

1 for feme time. 

How long ? 

Perhaps about 18 months. 

In what part of the country did your plantation lay, and how 
many acres of land did it confift of? 

I was poffeftLd of various tracts of land in the country, but I 
planted rice principally upon Hutchinfon’s Ifland, where I had a 
very valuable piece of ground, which confifted of betwixt 200 and 
300 acres. 

Was that land cultivated and worked by Negroes or free men? 

That land was cultivated with Negro Slaves. 

What number of Slaves had you upon that plantation ? 

I die 


[ *95 1 

The number was not always fixed, but there might be about 
40 working hands. 

Was the produce confined folely to rice ? 

It was not folely confined to rice, bccaufe the land was ca¬ 
pable of producing any thing, and at times I planted indigo upon 
different parts of it, and Indian corn alfo. 

What portion of the year were the Slaves employed in the 
cultivation of that land for rice ? 

It was common to commence tbe planting of rice about the 
20th of March; towards the beginning of September it was fit 
to be reaped ; after being reaped, it was carried into the barn 
yards; there ceafed, I may fay, the cultivation of the ground for 
the year. 

How many acres were ufually in culture in each year for 
rice P 

Commonly from 120 to 130 acres of rice. 

Was indigo cultivated in the fame year that you did rice ? 

Yes ; it was. 

How many acres of that plant did you have in culture 
aifoally ? 

Perhaps forty acres; and the reft of the land employed in railing 
Indian corn, peafe, and other fruits for the Negroes. 

What was the duration of the winter in Georgia ? 

We commonly ufed to have light frofts fet in about the 25th 
or 28th of October, which generally checked vegetation j the 
greateft feverity of our winter feldom fet in till about Chriftmas; 
and the commencement of our fpring was generally about the 
20th of March; the time I have mentioned when grain was 

What was the employment of your Negro Slaves on this 
.plantation during thefe winter months? 

The employment of the Negro Slaves during thefe winter 
months was to threlh out and prepare the rice for a market; and 
a little before the fpring commenced to repair the banks of the 

What was the ufual employment of your Slaves in Carolina ? 

6 Whilft 


[ 196 ] 

Whilft I lived in Charles Town as a merchant, I had no others 
hut houfehold Slaves, but as I was frequently in the country, I 
had everv opportunity to become acquainted with the nature and 
culture of the produce. 

Was the management and cultivation of your plantation upon 
Hutchinfon’s Ifland fimilar to the practice upon like plantations 
in South Carolina ? 

The management of my plantation upon Hutchinfon’s Ifland 
was precifely the fme with thole in the fame lituation in South 

What in general is the length of the winter in South Carolina? 
The length of the winter in South Carolina is much the fame 
as that in Georgia, there being but one degree of latitude 
diflance from Charles Town to Savannah. 

Was the provifion which you ufually allowed your Slaves of 
your own p. oduce, or purchafed by you ? 

The provifion which I allowed my Slaves was of my own 

What was the average value to you in that country of a peck 
of Indian corn, a peck of clean rice, and a bulhel of potatoes 
in the current money of Georgia ? 

A peck of Indian corn might be worth about feven pence 
halfpenny, a bufhel of potatoes from eight pence to ten pence 
perhaps, and a peck of rice ten pence. 

What was the current rate of exchange in Georgia, in pro¬ 
portion to fterling money of Great Britain ? 

The cu rent rate of exchange was ten per cent, difcount from 
the current money of Georgia, to bring it equal to fterling 
money in Great Britain, you give £. no in Georgia for a bill of 
exchange of £. 100 on Great Britain. 


What was the current exchange in Jamaica upon Great Bri¬ 
tt ? 

140/. current money of Jamaica for 100/. fterling. 

tain ? 

Did you ever experience in any one year, a fcarcity of all the 
articles of your Negro provdions, which might be afcribed to a 
failure in the feafons ? 


[ l 97 ] 

. n PrIor , the unfortunate difputes in America, I never knew an 
mftance of the Ieaft degree of fcarcity; upon the commencement 
of thofe deputes when people were driven from their poffeffions 

confiderable^dfgre^o/fcarchy. ^ ant * n ®’ * -aficned^a 

*“ - 

tori of C S”l^ h:Ch gaTe ° ur Ne S roes was the "lanufac- 
America ’ ““ P ‘ ,he ftoes - which "lade in 

In what year did you fettle in Georgia ? 

In the beginning of 1762. 

Where was your principal refidence there ? 

My principal refidence was in the town of Savannah. 

Was there in your time an eftablifhment in Georgia called an 
Orphan Houfe, a charitable eftablifliment ? * 

There was. 

By whom was it founded ? 

By the late Mr. George Whitfield. 

Did he endow it ? 

He obtained grants of land from the government for the nur- 
po e ot ereding a houfe, and alfo grants of land for eftablithini? 

UttaV hcdld ,r a M™** 1 bdieve ’ fr0m monLs which 
* collected principally m this country, purchafed Slaves, fettled 

H«“f u ^r,Td ' he P r ° d “ a 0f ,hat P la "“ion .he Orphan 

su^S c &r*:; < y? gu,arIy ^— ,o ch - h « 

ere were various meetings, and other places of worship in 
the town, to which they went. P> m 

m^ica?^ 0U reC °^ e< ^ tbe exa< ^ time when you firfl went to Ja- 
^Mhink it was to the beft of my recollection, in December 

3 E 


[ »9& 3 

Can you ftate the month and year when you left it ? 
About February or March 1779* 

Where did you generally refide whilft there • 

I cou'd not be fsid to have had any fixed rdider.ce; I was 

principally in the town of Kingfton. 

Was you called to that ifland by any matter of bufinefs ? 

When I left the Continent of America, which I was obliged to 
do, I had fomc rice and indigo with me for my fubfiftence i that 
I carried with me to Jamaica to fell, and I fold it there. 

Did you flay there any and what length of time after you had 

fold it ? , . r J 

I ftaid there feme little time afterward*. 

Had you leifure and opportunity of going into various parts, 
and how far, in the interior part of the country of Jamaica ? 

My curiofity led me to a good many of the different planta¬ 
tions, and I croffed the ifland for the fame reafon. 

To what part did you go from Kingflon acrofs the ifland ? 
To Annotto Bay. 

What diftance might that be from Kingfton ? 
I believe it to be about forty or fifty miles. 

Did you return from thence to Kingfton by the fame rout that 
V °I dc^not know that I took the eXad road upon my return. 

How long was you upon that expedition from your fetting out 
from, till your return to Kingfton ? 

I cannot fay the precife time. 

Can you ftate the different plantations, and 
proprietors which you vifited whilft at Jamaica 
1 do not recoiled the names of the whole 
Gray’s eftate and Mr. Zachary Bayley’s. 

the names of the 
i there was Mr. 

Were either of thofe gentlemen refident upon their eftates ? 

6 Not 

Not at the time. 

[ 199 ] 

Were they in Europe ? 

I am not fure but Mr. Bay ley was dead at the time; I knew 
Mr. Gray was in Europe particularly. 

Whofe plantation was that, the manager of which you faid 
was your particular friend, and where you laid you had the pri¬ 
vilege of going where you pleafed, and making your obferva- 
tions ? 

I do not chufe to be making ufe of the gentleman’s name in cafes 
of this kind. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put, that the 
Witnefs be called in, and that he be direded by the Chairman to 
anfwer the queftion laft put to him; 

It was refolved in the affirmative. A 

Then the Witnefs being again called in, the Chairman ac¬ 
quainted him with the faid refolution. 

Queftion repeated'. 

The gentleman that had the management of the eftate where 
I was, was Mr. Hugh Polfon he was rather attorney, I believe, 
than manager. 

Who was the proprietor of that plantation ? 

Mr. Gray. 

Did you ever, in your enquiries upon other plantations, find that 
it was the cuftom in Jamaica, or at thofe plantations in particular, 
to work their Negroes on a Sunday j and if fo, to whom did thofe 
plantations belong ? 

I cannot fay that I am certain of its being a general pradice 
throughout the ifland of working on Sunday j but I underftood 
that it was a good deal the cafe j—I cannot name the plantations. 

On Mr. Gray’s eftate that you have mentioned, did it appear 
to be their cuftom to work the Negroes in the cane land, or in 
the provifion ground only on Sundays ? 


[ 200 ] 

On the provifion ground only. 

Had the Negroes in Jamaica any, and how much time allowed 
them for breakfafl end dinner ? 

About an hour to breakfafl, and nearly two hours for dinner. 

How many hours in the twenty-four, in general, from De¬ 
cember to March, was the fun above the horizon in Jamaica while 
you was there ? 

* I believe it may be twelve hours and a half, as near as I can 


Have the Negroes in Jamaica any portion of land allowed them 
for the cultivation of provifions, fruits, and other vegetables, the 
produce of which was entirely at their own difpofal ? 

I did not underhand that they had any other ground allotted 
them, but what was called in general the Negro grounds, which 
they planted with plantains and roots for their fubfiftence; and I 
believe if there was a {urplus, after they had received their own 
provifions for their fupport, that the remainder might be appropri¬ 
ated to their own ufe. 

Can you hate the names of any proprietors or planters in 
Jamaica, from whom you ever heard that it was a prevailing wifli 
and fyftem among the planters, rather to keep up and increafe their 
flock of Negroes by purchafe of newly imported ones from Africa, 
than by births on their own eflates ? 

I cannot fay that I can fix upon any name, as thefe matters only 
paired in curfory converfation, probably at a table. 

Are you fure that: you ever heard a proprietor of plantations give 
that opinion in any converfation ? 

I think I may venture to fay, I have heard a proprietor of an 
eflate or planter fay, in a mixture of gentlemen at a table, upon a 
calculation that it would be found that this might be the cafe. 

Do you mean to fay then, that you collected from the tenor of 
conversations, at which you were prefent, and where there was a 
mixture of planters and other perfbns, that the planters in general, 
in Jamaica, had rather keep up and increafe their flock of Slaves 
by purchafing newly imported ones from Africa, than by the bleed¬ 
ing of them upon their plantations ? 

No j I do not fay that it would be general by any means. 


L «io 3 

Do you, from your obfervation and experience of a refidence of 
three or four months in Jamaica, think it poflible that in the 
cultivation of a fugar plantation there could be fuch an inter- 
miflicn of the ordinary field labour upon it, as there was upon your 
rice plantation in Hutchinfon’s Ifland, from the month of Ottober 
to March in each year ? 

My refidence being but for a fhort time, I could not fj well 
judge of thele matters. 

Do you think that your refidence in Jamaica was long enough 
to afford you fufficient information, as to the general fyftem which 
prevails in that ifland, with refpedt to the management and con¬ 
duit of fugar eftates and other plantations, and the treatment and 
conduit of owners and proprietors of eftates in general towards 
their Slaves ? 

No; not think my refidence was fufficiently long to give 
me a complete idea of the fyftem by any means, I only fpeak of 
fuch things as I faw. 

Do you know what number of working Negroes would be 
required in Jamaica to cultivate a crop of fugar of 170 or 180 acres 
of land annually ? 

I cannot fay I do. 

You have ftated, that the largeft number of working Negroes 
that you had upon yoar plantation in Hutchinfon's Ifland (confid¬ 
ing of between 200 and 300 acres of land) did not exceed 40, 
and that the greater part, if not the whole, of that land was each 
year cultivated in rice, indigo, and Indian corn; which then do 
you apprehend to be the moft laborious, the cultivation of fuch 
a plantation as your’s in Hutchinfon’s Ifland, or of a fugar planta¬ 
tion in Jamaica, of which 170 or 180 acres were annually in cul¬ 
ture for fugar ? 

I am really of opinion, that the culture of rice is as heavy labour 
as the culture of fugar, in a great meafure, as there is a vaft deal 
of labour neceffary to be beftowed in lupporting the dams, to de¬ 
fend it againft the impreflion of the Water; and that altogether I 
conceive rice to be as laborious in cultivation as fugar. 

Was the man who hanged himfelf upon your eftate, a Creole of 
North America, or imported from Africa? 

He was imported from Africa. 

3 F 



[ 203 ] 

Did you never hear, that in fome particular parts of Africa the 
natives are prone to filicide ? 

I have heard that the Negroes from the Ebo country (and in¬ 
deed I know it in fome meafure) are remarkably high fpirited, 
and do not brook llavery fo well as thofie from feveral other 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mart is , 18° die Maii 1790. 

GEORGE BAILLIE, Efquire, called inj and further 

Did you fee on the various plantations you was upon, fields of 
corn cultivated by the gang Of Negroes, as part of the labour on 
the eftate, and which corn was for the general ufe of the Negroes 
on the plantation ? 

I did fee corn on feveral plantations, and I believe it was com¬ 
monly appropriated for the ufe of feeding horfes, and perhaps 
Negroes alfo. 

What fort of corn was it ? 

A fmall yellow Indian corn. 

Did you fee any plantain walks ? 

I did fee fome very extenfive ones. 

For whofe ufe were they ? 

I believe them to be appropriated for the fupport of the Ne¬ 
groes in general. 

You have faid, “ That you did not think field-labour would 
“ have been held as degrading to a Mulatto or Free Negro in 
** Jamaica i” do you think that the Mulattoes or Free Negroes 
themfelves would not think it degrading to work at the com¬ 
mon labour of a plantation with the Slaves ? 


[ 203 ] 

My meaning there was, that as it was cuftomary on the Con¬ 
tinent of America for Free Negroes and Mulattoes either to ob¬ 
tain a permiffion from proprietors of lands to plant upon parts of 
their eftate:, or perhaps to rent a piece of land which they 
planted for their own benefit; and as I can conceive that it might 
probably be the cafe in Jamaica, I do not apprehend that labour 
of this kind would be held degrading; at the fame time it was not 
the practice with thefe people to hire themfelves out to work in 
common amongft the field Slaves. I am clear it is not the pra&ice 
on the Continent of America ; but not fo pofitive with refpedt .to 
the people in Jam.ica. 

Do you think that you refided long enough in Jamaica, and 
that your opportunities of feeing the plantation Slaves there, were 
fufficiently frequent to enable you to perceive a very ftriking 
difference between their condition, and that of the generality of the 
Slaves in that part of the Continent of America with which you 
are acquainted ? 

To be fure my refidence was not long; but I muft confefs, 
upon feeing the gangs of Negroes, I did not think them from their 
appearance fo robuft, or fuch good looking people, as they were in 
general on the Continent. 

Do you think yourfelf fufficiently acquainted with the manage¬ 
ment of Negroes to aflert with confidence, that the mode of em¬ 
ploying them by talk work is far more comfortable to them than 
that of keeping them at work throughout the day, as commonly 
pradtifed in the Weft Indies ? 

I do think myfelf fo far well acquainted with the management 
of Negroes as to be convinced, that the method of working them 
by talk work is far preferable to the methods I faw adopted in the 
Weft Indies of working them conftantly. 

Is it your opinion that any confiderable part of that fuperiority 
in appearance, which you have ftated to exift in the American, 
over the Weft India Negro, may fairly be afcribed to this dif¬ 
ference in the mode of their employment ? 

I really believe it may be fo in fome meafure. 

Did you ever hear that the experiment of working Negroes in 
the manner it is done in America, had been tried on a Weft In¬ 
dia plantation ? 

I cannot fay that ever I did. 


[ 304 ] 

Can you fpeak with certainty, as to your own knowledge, that 
you ever faw either Free Negroes or Mullattoes working in the 
field in Jamaica for hire, with Negroes, or by themfelves ? 

I cannot fay that I can fpeak with certainty. 

Did you ever hear it faid by any planter, or other perfon in Ja¬ 
maica, that it was ufual for Free Negroes or Mulattoes to hire them- 
felves out to work at field labour in the plantations ? 

No ; I do not recoiledt that I ever heard it faid. 

Was it ufual in your time, in Georgia, or South Carolina, for 
White Freemen to hire themfelves out to till the earth, and work 
in the fields ? 

In the upper parts of the country, where the cultivation of 
grain or Indian corn was carried on by the plough, it was fome- 

times cuftomary for White Men to hire themfelves out as fer- 

Do you apprehend yourfelf to be as good a judge of the eafieft 
and beft methods of working Negroes on a plantation in Jamaica 
as the planters in that ifland ? 

And the queftion being objected to j 
The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put, That 
the Witnefs be called in, and alked the faid queftion ; * 

It was refolved in the affirmative. 

Then the Witnefs being again called in; 

The queftion was repeated. 

No, by no means; I would not prefume to fay anv fuch 
thing. J 

Did any fadts come to your obfervation or knowledge, whilft 
you was in Jamaica, to induce you to believe, that the planters in 
that ifland, as a body of men, are in general lefs fufceptible of the 
dictates of humanity towards their Slaves, than the planters in 
Georgia or South Carolina ? 

And the queflion being objected to; 


[ 205 ] 

The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And being again called in; 

The queftion was repeated. 

It is a very difagreeable thing to be.drawing comparifons, with 
refpe£t to gentlemen’s opinions, or their conduit-, in any manner 
whatfoever j I therefore would wilh not to fay any thing further 
upon that fubjeit. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mercurii , 19 0 die Maii 1790. 

Sir GEORGE YOUNG, captain in the Royal Navy, 
called in; and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa? 

Yes; four voyages. 

In what parts of Africa ? 

From Cape Blanco to Cape Lopas, which includes every 
Englilh fettlement, and fome Dutch. 

In what years ? 

In the years 1767 and 1768, and in the years 1771 and 1772. 

What opinions did you form concerning the general modes of 
obtaining Slaves on the coaft of Africa ? 

My opinion was founded upon the information of natives and 
fettlers; which was, that the principal and greateft part were 
taken as prifoners of war; a fecond method was that of crimes, 
imputed or real* another by panyaring, which is what I un- 
derftood to be kidnapping, but the term there is panyar j another 
mode I was informed they had, which was, one village that was 
ftronger than another feizing that which was weaker, and dif- 
pofing of the inhabitants to the fhips.—Under thofe four heads 
were comprized all the modes that I ever could learn. 

3 G 


[ 206 ] 

I ■ 

Did any thing fall within your own perfonal notice in proof of 
the opinion, that wars are fometimes made by one ftate on ano¬ 
ther for the purpofe of procuring Slaves P 

When at Annamaboe, at the houfe of Mr. Brew, a very great 
merchant there, he had two hoftages, kings fons, for the pur¬ 
pofe of payment for arms and military {tores of all forts, which 
he had fnpplied to the two kings, who were at war with each 
other, for the purpofe of procuring Slaves, and for which the 
fhips were then waiting in the road, fix or feven at lead; they 
were brought down prifoners on both fides to Mr. Brew, and fent 
on board thofe fhips. 

Did any thing fall within your obfervation which induced you 
to believe kidnapping to be frequently pradtifed ? 

Two inftances fell in my way; the one was a beautiful infant 
boy, brought along-fide the fhip in a canoe, for the purpofe of fale y 
having been along-fide of all the trading fhips, and not able to 
fell it there, they brought it to the Phoenix, the fhip I belonged 
to, and threatened to tofs it overboard if no one purchafed it ; 
faying at the fame time, they panyared that child, with many 
other people the night before, but they could not fell him, though 
they had fold the others.—I then purchafed the infant for a quarter 
calk of Vidonia wine, and brought him to England, and gave him 
^ to Lord Shelburne; I do not know what is become of him now, 

but I believe I e is alive;—that was the only inftance 1 know, as 
coming u: der the tranfadtions of the Blacks themfelves.—The 
other was an initance of one of our Liverpool (hips, where the 
captain had obtained a girl as a mi ft refs for the time being from 
king Tom of Sierra Leone ; and inllcad of returning her on fhore 
when he went away, as is ufually done, he took her away with 
him ; and this the king complained of to me very heavily, and 
begged of me to apply to his brother George (meaning our king) 
to get her reftored to him ; I am forty 1 cannot charge my memory 
with the name of the fhip, nor of the captain; it was many 
vears ago, in 1772; and this, king Tom called, buchra, or White 
man’s panyating. 

•Was the term panyaring which you mentioned generally ufed 
on the coaft ? 

It feemed to be a word generally ufed all along the coal! where 
I was, not only among the Englifh, but the Portugutfe and 

Does the fovereign or chief of a diftridt generally derive a cer¬ 
tain profit from the fale of fuch Slaves as are fold in his diftridt ? 

I always 

[ 207 ] 

I always heard fo, and I believe it to be the cafe in general. 

Have you any reafon to believe depredations were ever com¬ 
mitted on the coafl of Africa by European traders ? 

I have reafon to believe fo, having heard many inflances of it j 
but I faw none. 

Can you mention any particular circumftances in confirmation 
cf this opinion ? 

Being obliged to go into the river St. Andrew for frefh water, 
on making a prefent to the king, as is ufual, of a cafe of gin, for 
the privilege of watering, he obliged me to drink a dram out of 
every one of the bottles, to the amount of 12, for fear they fhould 
be poifoned ; upon which I afked why he was fo particular, and 
he laid it was ufual for traders (but he did not fay whether Black 
or White) 10 make ufe of poifon ; but that he fhould not have 
obliged me to drink this, if he had known the fhip had been a 
man of war, as he knew a man of war had no defign of panyaring; 
the term was “ no come for panyar." 

Did the natives, when in the canoes, ever fhew any apprehen- 
fions of approaching your lhip, or any fear of coming on board ? 

AH down that part of the coaft, from the river Sherbro till we 
got to Appolonia, they were all equally fearful till we convinced ft 

them we were a “ man war fhip.’’ 

So foon as they found your fhip was a man of war, did they 
difmifs their apprehenfions ? 

Yes; they immediately came on board, and continued with 
us fome time, begging pipes and tobacco, and drams, laying 

man war fhip always give dram r that was their principal 
Hufinefs; they brought off very little with them except a few 


What opinion did you form of the natural capacity of the 
Negroes, and of the.r temper end difpofition ? 

Many I met with leemed to poffefs as llrong natural fenfe 
as any fet of people whatever; their temper feemed to be 
very good natured and civil to a degree, unlefs they fufpedled 
lbme injury was intended them; remove that, and they were 
as civil as any fet of people could pofiibly be; they are, how¬ 
ever, naturally vinditfive, acd it has been known they have re¬ 
venged the injury done them by one White man upon the next 
that came ; it is a kind of wild juflice that they piadliie where- 
they can; at Tantumquerry, one of their great men ire¬ 


[ 208 ] 

vited me to a dinner; and as he dreffed himfelf in European 
clothes and fpoke very good English, I alked him, in conver- 
iation, what he thought of White men in general: his anfwer 
was to this effect, “ That God Almighty made White man after 
“ he had made Black man ; that when he made Black man and 
“ White man, he put a great heap of gold upon table, and a great 
heap of bookee (by which he m_ant learning and knowledge), 
( and when fo done, God Almighty faid. Black man, which you 
“ Ilke —Black man very great fool come chufe gold ; White man 
“ chufe bookee, and in fo doing all one come, God himfelf.” 

Bere arofe in another place a very great difpute between the 
Blacks and Whites, on which I afked the king the caufe (for he 
was with me), and his anfwer was, “ That there was rnuchee, 
“ to ° much palaver, but he could not fee the reafon.’’ 

Did you fee any thing to induce you to believe, that the indo¬ 
lence of the natives is fuch, that they would not cultivate the foil 
for natural productions, provided they had no other means of ob¬ 
taining European commodities ? 

I faw no reafon why they fhould not, and I verily believe that 
they would ; nay, I recollect fome circumftances in which they 
did—A number of people from the Bullam fhore came over to 
Sierra Leone, and offered their fervices to work, and that at a 
very low price—fay three bars per month per man ; and I accepted 
of a few; thole worked very well, and if I had been fo difpofed, 
and had had time, I might have had thoufands under the lame 
defcription. Another inftance was, whenever I ftood in need of 
venifon, or hog and wild fowl, they would promife to bring it 
the next day, for they mult go to the bufh for it (meaning to go 
mto the wood) ; this they did frequently ; and I always had plenty 
of venifon, wild fowl, and fruits, all the time we were there * and 
that was a general practice all down the Coaft. 

To what natural produftions have the foil and climate of Africa 
appeared to you belt adapted ? 

It appeared to me, from the many places I flopped at, that 
it was capable of producing every thing of the Eaft or Weft 

Indies, m equal perfcaion, had it equal advantages of cultiva¬ 
tion. ° 

Did you fee or hear of the fpices in Africa ? 

I faw two forts of the cardamum, fome black pepper, the fame 
as in the Eaft Indies, the bird pepper. Chili pepper, or Cayenne 
pepper, which is one and the fame thing j I faw alfo a fpecies 

1 of 

[ 209 ] 

of ginger. There is a great quantity of cinnamon at the ifland 
of Saint Thomas, feveral plants of which I brought to Eng¬ 

< What was the general ftate of the African forts when you were 

on the Coaft ? 

Not one of them in a very good ftate, but many of them bad 
indeed; Secundee, Tantumquerry, and Winnebah, were in fuch a 
ftate as not to be able to fire a gun, left the explofion fhould blow 
down the whole caftle; and they apologized to us for not being 
able to falute us, under that defcription. Cape Coaft caftle and 
Annamaboe caftle were under repair at the time, and the fort at 
Appolonia was not quite finifhed. 

Were you ever on board of a Slave (hip ? 

Yes; feveral times. 

What remark did you make concerning its condition in point of 
cleanlir.efs and fweetnefs ? 

They were all in a ftate of cleanlinefs*—-as clean indeed as their 
fituation, with the number of men confined on board, would ad¬ 
mit of; I attempted to go down the fore hatchway of one, but 
the ftench was intolerable, and that deterred me ; and at that time 
fhe had not more than 2 00 on board, and waited for 200 more; 
the men were all chained, which 1 confidered as a neceflary pre¬ 
caution, as there were not quite twenty feamen on board the fhip 
at that time. 

From what you have had an opportunity of remarking, do you 
conceive the African Slave Trade to be a nurlery for feamen ? 

By no means a nurfery, but rather a grave. 

What was the appearance of the feamen whom you have feen 
on board the Slave (hips ? 

Thofe I faw complained of their ill-treatment, bad feeding, 
and cruel ufage; and wanted me to take them on board of my fhip ; 
they all of them wanted to enter; I afked fome of them the rea- 
fon why they were fo treated; their anfwer was, that it was the 
practice of the owners and mafters of the veflels to treat them fo, 
in order to induce them to run away when they came to the Weft 
Indies, by which means they forfeited their wages; it was the 
cuftom likewife for the feamen of every fhip we faw at a dif- 
tance, with their boats to come on board of us; moft of t iein 
1 quite naked; and threatening to turn pirates if we did not take 

4 3 7/ them; 

[ ] 

them; that they told us openly; I am perfuaded, if I had given 
encouragement, and had had a (hip of the line to have manned, 
I could have done it in a very ftiort time, for they would all have 
left the (hips; I muft make another remark, that I took parti¬ 
cular notice that I never faw a boy on board any of the Guinea 

jhips I was on board of; in every other trade, there are always 
boys on board. J 

Did you ever know any inftances of failors efcaping from their 
Imps, and taking refuge in the woods r 

Many I have heard, feveral I have feen, and received them on 
board my (hip in confequence of their being in the woods, and 
having no fubliftence. 

Did you fee any timber in Africa, which you conceived might 
be ufeful for the fupply of the navy? 6 

1 (aw a great deal of very fine timber, ufeful in my opinion 
tor (hip building and houfe building, as well as for the pur- 
poles of furniture (likewife dying woods of great variety), tome 
of which I brought home, and turned into furniture j and I have 
tome fpccimens now ; fome of ebony, iron wood, and other forts, 

aU /r°.L , . ver y hard J when I was at Sierra Leone, I faw a 
vetfel belonging to Mr. Pintard, built upon the Rocks, of the 
woods of Sierra Leone. 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies? 

Yes; a great deal. 

When, and in what parts ? 

I was at Barbadoes, at Antigua, St. Kitt’s, Dominica, Grenada. 
Guadaloupe, Martinique, Porto Rico, and at length at Jamaica • 
the time muft be from the year 1761 to 1763; but I have been 
lince there feveral times in a man of war, as well as fometimes 
a paflenger in a merchant (hip; I was twice in the Piicenix at 
Barbadoes, Antigua, St. Kitt’s, Dominica, and Jamaica, in the 
years 1767 and 1768. 

land ? VC y ° U CVer bCen t0 farmIn S» and the management of 

Yes; in England it has been my amufement and pleafure ever 
fince the laft peace. 

Did you remark any defefls in the management of Weft India 
plantations ? 

I remarked 

t «*» 1 

I remarked to the leveral gentlemen there, and indeed difputed 
with them upon the fubjedt of the great want of the plough and 
Ipade j and conlidered the hoe as an implement much more labo¬ 
rious, and requiring more exertion than the Ipade, confiderably 

Was talk work ever pradtifed in any of the iflands in which 
you have been ? 

I never faw or heard of any. 

Did you remark any bad effedts which might be afcribed to the 
proprietors of the plantations being abfent, and to the eftates and 
Slaves being under the diredlion of managers ? 

Certainly very great; and I am convinced the abfence of the 
owners of the eftates in the Weft Indies is a great means of ren¬ 
dering them of not near their value—I take upon me to fay, at 
leaft a fifth of the whole—for the overleers or managers who had 
been but little time upon any of them always became rich, and fre¬ 
quently more fo than their mailers. 

In what refpedt was the abfence of the proprietors injurious, as 
to what regards the Slaves ? 

In the firft place the Slaves were made to work harder than I 
am fure their mailers would have allowed of—their provifions 
were not fo good—generally fait provifions—fometimes dried 
filh, or ftinking fait meat, which their mailers, I am fure, would 
not have allowed, for I have the honour to be acquainted with 
fome of them: from the merchants of Kingfton (Jamaica) I was 
informed, that it was not an uncommon pradlice for the overfeers 
to buy lickly Slaves, and not at above half the price, and fome¬ 
times lefs, and charge them to their mailers as prime and healthy 
Slaves; thofe frequently died (a great many of them however), as 
it was faid, in the feafoning of the climate, which I confider as a 
farce altogether. 


Did you hear whether, as a general opinion, the fyftem of 
purchafing and working out African Negroes, or that of keeping 
up the Hock of Slaves by breeding, was deemed the moll profit¬ 
able plan ? 

All I ever underftood wac, that purchafing Slaves was much 
the cheapeft method of keeping up their numbers ; for that the 
mother of a bred Slave was taken from the field labour for three 
years, which labour was of more value than the coll of a prime 
Slave or new Negro. 



t «* 1 

What was the mode of working the Slaves in the field in the 
Weft Indies ? 

They were in gangs, and in regular rows, with hoes in their 
hands, and they kept regular time with their hoes in their work ; 
the whole gang together. 

Were the more weakly Negroes obliged to keep up with the 
more robuft in this mode of working ? 

Certainly they were obliged to do it ; for there were black 
fellows over them that they call drivers, with a whip called a 
cow fkin in their hands, and I fuppofe if they had not they 
would have been punifhed. 

Were you ever in the Eaft Ind es ? 

Yes; a great deal. 

Did you ever fee or hear of any labourers working in the field 
under the whip of a driver, in any other part of the world but 
the Weft Indies ? 

No, never—either in the Eaft Indies or America. 

Did any particular inftance of the high fpi’rit of the Negro 
come to your knowledge when on the Coaft of Africa ? 

Yes; one inftance, and that was at Accra; the governor there 
had purchafed a Slave from a country where they are always known 
when they are taken as Slaves to put themfelves to death, and in 
this infiance was fpeaking to Commodore Collingwood and my- 
felf of having been cheated by the merchants who fold him this 
Slave, and that he was a very fine fellow, would we go and fee him, 
for that he had mortally wounded himfelf in the night preceding. 
When the Commodore and I went to look at him, and upbraided 
him with his rafh conduft, by the interpreter, his reply was, 
that no man of his country could live as a Slave, but thjit he was 
very well inclined to ferve the Commodore in the man of war 
but not as a Slave; he died the next night. 

Did the Negro women on the Coaft of Africa, fo far as you had 
an opportunity of obferving, appear a prolific race of people? 

Yes, certainly fo; as much fo as in any part of the world that 
ever I was in. 

Was the climate of the Weft Indies more unfavourable to them 
than that of Africa? 


[ 3 ] 

Certainly not To much more favourable to them than their 

How long were you on the Coaft of Af ica ? 

About fix months each time. 

What was the number of your crew ? 

In the (hip I commanded it was one hundred. 

What number did you lofe in each of thofe voyages ? 

We loft two men by ficknefs, and a boy by accident; the two 
men were fickly when they went out. 

From all your jobfervations were you led to conclude, that if 
due attention were paid to the rearing of Negroes in the Weft India 
Illands, in all the feveral ways in which that attention might be 
exerted, the (lock of Slaves might be kept up or increafed, with¬ 
out importations from Africa ? 

I think it might; at firft indeed the deficiencies would be felt 
for a few years, fay for about 20 years; but after a while they 
would double their numbers; and I fee no phyfical caufe to pre¬ 
vent a black man and woman in the Weft Indies being equally 
prolific as they are in Africa. 

Is the land in general cultivated by men or women in the part 
of Africa where you have been ? 

Moftly by the men ; the women fometimes fet fire to the graft, 
but that is very little; the men turn up the ground with pointed 
flicks, for they have no European implements there, at leaft none 
that I faw. 

In which of the Weft India Iflands did you refide for the great- 
eft fpace of time ? 

In Jamaica. 

How long might you have refided at Jamaica in the whole ? 

The longeft time I was ever on Ihore at one time there was fix 
weeks; I was ftationed there in the time of the war before laft. 

Did you refide any confiderable time on fhore in any of the 
other Britifh Iflands that you have named ? 

No; not above a week or ten days at the moft at any one time. 

3 7 What 

[ 2, 4 ] 

What might be the longeft time together that you ever redded 
on a fugar plantation ? 

I was at Mr. Prevoft’s eftate at Old Harbour in Jamaica for 
more than three weeks ; and from thence went up to Mr. 
Thomas’s at Sixteen-mile Walk, and was about three weeks there. 

In the arguments which you have ftated to have had with the 
planters refpedling the fuperiority of the plough and fpade over 
the hoe, did you gain any profelytes to your opinion ? 

No, none indeed ; I had the lame prejudices to -encounter as 
with the farmers in England, that their fathers did fo before 
them ; there was not another realon given. 

Have you fufficient data to form an opinion upon, whether the 
African Slave Trade is or is not neceflary to the cultivation of the 
Weft India Ifiands ? 

If the prefent lyftem is to prevail, it certainly is neceflary; but 
if any regulation was to take place to promote the breed of the 
Negroes in the Weft India Iflands, it would be totally unnecef- 

How do you know that due attention is not paid by the plant¬ 
ers to the rearing of children ? 

When 1 was there on thofe eftates I have mentioned, and on 
fotne others, I found no encouragement given to the Blacks to 
marry ; that they promifcuoufly cohabited with each other, and 
that the women generally mifcarried, as I was told by Mr. 
Prevoft and Mr. Thomas, from their hard field labour and that 
it was a rare thing for a Negreis to have a live child, who was 
employed in field labour: another remark I muft make, that after 
taking the Havannah, and being aflociated with the Spamfli 
planters on the Ifle of Cub.i, I found they made it a ferious point 
to marry them wherever they could, and to make them Cbriftians, 
and to keep them regularly together; they had them chriftened, 
and gave them little rewards and encouragements, according to 
the number of children they produced and reared j and the men 
ufed to boaft of their being Chriftians, and value themfelves not 
a little upon it, and wear a crofs about their necks; that led me 
to remark of nothing of the kind being done in Jamaica, and 
I enquired all I could. 

. Was polygamy a prevailing cuftom among the Negroes in 
Jamaica whilit you was there ? 


[ 215 ] 

Yes: from every information I could learn; very promifcuous 
* * 


Did Mr. P;evoft and Mr. Thomas, and the other planters 
whom you converfed with on the fubjedl of agriculture, appear to 
you to be men of fo little education and information as to be able 
t° give you no other reafon for rejeding the plough, and the fpade, 
than becaufe their fathers had done fo before them ? 

I do not admit of the idea of their being deficient in educa¬ 
tion, or indeed obfervation; their reafons with many others 
were, that the ground was fo hard the plough could not go 
through it; that the Negroes knew nothing of the plough, nor 
had they any one to teach them; and that it had ever been the 
practice to make ufe of the hoe;—and that was the fubftance of 
their arguments in favour of it, which I think was faying no¬ 

Did you ever hear from either of thofe gentlemen, or any 
other planters, that it was the fyftem prevailing in Jamaica, 
rather to fupply their eftates with the Negroes by purchafes of 
newly imported Africans, than by being at the trouble of breed¬ 
ing of children on their eftates? 

Yes;—from their converfation, and that of other planters, it 
feemed to be the univerfal fyftem every where.—I do not confine 
myfelf particularly to them. 

If the abolition of the Slave Trade was to take place, by what 
means do you apprehend that thofe parts of Dominica, and the 
other Iflands in the Weft Indies, ceded by France to Great Bri¬ 
tain by the peace of 1763, which are yet in woods and unclear¬ 
ed, can be cleared and cultivated, according to the tenor of the 
grants from the Crown ? 

I conceive that they cannot be cleared without the purchafe of 
Negroes from lome part or other ; but I know nothing of the 
conditions of thofe grant*. 

In your judgment, will or will not the cultivation of the 
Weft India Iflands with which you are acquainted to the ex¬ 
tent of which they arc capable increafe the trade and naviga¬ 
tion of Great Britain ? 

Certainly they will. 

! .1 

Is there any part of the Ifland of Jamaica, to your knowledge, 

1 or 


[ ] 

or bed information, and which is dill fit for cultivation, yet in 
an unfettled and uncleared date ? 

I am informed there is a great deal uncleared. 

Notwithdanding the unfavourable circumdances which you 
have Hated to attend the feamen in the African Slave Trade, yet 
as long as in your opinion it may be necefiary, from the de¬ 
fers you have luppofed to exift in the prefent mode of keeping 
up the Hock of Slaves in Jamaica, that the Slave Trade thould 
be continued; can the lots of (eamen, by the unfavourable cir- 
cumdanccs of the Slave Trade, be put in competition with the 
increafed number of feamen that mud necefiarily be confequent 
upon the increafed cultivation of the Iflands ? 

Upon my word I think not;—but at the fame time I mud 
obferve, that the lofs of feamen in the African Slave Trade, as 
now carried on, is annually greater than the increafe of feamen 
in the Wed India Trade. 

You have dated, “ That you have been informed by the mer- 
'* chants of Kingdon, that it was not an uncommon practice for 
“ the overfeers on plantations to buy fickly Negro Slaves at half 
“ price, and to charge them to their maders as prime onesdid 
you, or did you not, underdand it to be the general cudom, that 
abfent proprietors of edates in Jamaica had generally fome friend 
or other perfon of character to adt for them as attorney or agent 
in the bufinefs of their edates ? 

Not generally; I have known one or two indances only; but 
I have underdood it was not fo generally ; that goes beyond my 
knowledge of the matter. 3 

Did you underdand that Negroes upon a plantation were or 
were not generally divided in gangs or clafils, according to their 
age and drength, and the various work upon a plantation didri- 
buted amongft them accordingly? 

The obtervations I was able to make at Mr. Prevod’s edate at 
Old Harbour, led me not to difeover any didindtion between the 
weak and the drong; but they were in gangs mod certainly. 

You have dated as a general obfervation in the Privy Coun¬ 
cil report, “ That you could not get the men to work for you 
did you mean to adert that only of fome particular parts of the 
coad, or of the whole with which you are acquainted ? 

Only of fome particular parts ; it was not meant to be given 
there as general. ° 


It appears that you have alfo Rated in the Privy Council Re¬ 
port • « 'That the field labours are ufually performed by wo¬ 
men,” to what part of the coaft is that affertion meant to 

refer ^ 

To no part whatever ; for I never faw the women do any thing 
but carry the corn home, and fet fire to the Rubble of the Lft 

Is it or is it not, your opinion, that if the Slave Trade were 
abolifhed, other branches of Trade might be cultivated lefs de- 
ftrudtive to the feamen, and in which luch a number might be 
employed as would more than counterbalance thofe numbers 
which the increafe of the Weft India produce may reafonably be 

expected to employ ? . , . , 

Mv opinion of that is, that by fhewing the natives how to 
cultivate the land, it would call for the labour of ten times the 
number that are now tranfported to the Weft Indies as Slaves, 
and require a greater number of fhipping and feamen in the com¬ 
merce for the natural productions of that country, without any 
greater inconvenience in point of health to the feamen than in the 
prefent Weft India trade. 

If the Slave Trade were to be abolifhed, and every proper regu¬ 
lation adopted, to encourage the breeding of Negroes in the Weft 
Indies, do you or do you not apprehend that the ftock of Negroes 
at prefent there would gradually increafe, fo as to be adequate to 
the clearing and cultivation of all the iflands to the full ex¬ 
tent of which they are capable ? 

Yes; I believe they would. 

What are thofe proper regulations that are ftill wanting ? 

I only can conceive that the women there on the fpot fhould 
be married; that the man and woman fhould have a little hut to 
themfelves; the woman fhould be taken wholly from the field 
labour, and only put to fuch labour as (he is capable of, as a 
woman bearing children: the man fhould be allowed one day in 
a week to work for himfelf and family j a reward fhould be 
given to the woman who had the greateft number of children, and 
who fhould rear them. Under thefe regulations, I conceive, in the 
courfe of twenty years, their prefent numbers may be doubled, and 
the trade in Slaves from Africa totally unneceffary. 

How many additional Negroes do you imagine are now wanted 

3 K to 

[ 2l8 ] 

to clear and cultivate all the land at prefent uncleared and uncul¬ 
tivated in Jamaica, and the other Britith iflands ? 

I am not competent to judge of that. 

y° u k "° w the f P ecific number of Negroes in each of the 
xSntifh Jllands ? 

No j I do not. 

Do you know the fpecific quantity of lands that are now un¬ 
cleared and uncultivated ? 

No, I do not: I have not been in the Weft Indies fince 1772 • 
and I thould luppofe a great deal had been cleared fince; but 1 
cannot ipeak to that. 

Upon what principles of calculation then do you fix the period 
or twenty years for the purpofc you have mentioned ? 

From the circumftance of the Americans doubling their num¬ 
bers in lefs than twenty years. 

And then the Witnefs was direfted to withdraw. 


That the Examination of Ifaac Parker, the Reverend John 
Newton, Mr. Morley, Captain Thompfon, Captain Hills, 
Mr. Baill e, and Sir George Young, be reported to the 



„ _ 








Reported 21ft May 1790. 

Witnefies Examined, 



Captain THOMPSON, 
Captain HILLS, 





Lu?i(C^ 7 0 die Junii 179°* 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed to take 
the Examination of Witnefles on the Slave Trade. 

Martis , 

18° die Matt 1790. 

Anthony PANTALEO HOW, Efquire, called in} 

and examined. 

Were you ever in Africa ? 


When; in what lituation ; and to what parts ? 

I was there in 1785 and 1786, in the Grampus man of war, on 
the Coaft of Guinea (from Goree as far as Saint Thomas, chiefly 
on the Gold Coaft), employed by Government in the capacity of a 

Did any thing come within your notice which led you to form 
any opinions refpedting the mode of obtaining Slaves on any part 
of the Gold Coaft ? 

When I was at Secundee, an order came from Cape Coaft 
Caftle, but for what purpofe I cannot tell *, however, the fame 

3 L afternoon, 


[ 220 ] 

afternoon, between 4 and 5 o’clock, fcveral parties went out 
armed, and returned the fame night with a quantity of Slaves 
which were put in the rcpofitory belonging to the fa&ory. The 
following morning I faw feveral women and men coming to fee 
their friends who were imprifoned, and requeued of Mr. Marfh 
tne relident at Secundee, to releafe fome of their children and 
relations ;fome were releafed, and a part of them fent off to Cape 
Coalt Caftle—but on what terms they were releafed I cannot fay. 

Had you any reafon to believe they were any of them obtained 
by unfair means ? 

Yes ; as they came at fuch an unfeafonable time of the night 
and ffeing their parents and friends crying, and petitioning Mr! 
Marfh for their releafe, I had every reafon to fuppofe that they were 
obtained by unfair means; and I have been told as much from Mr. 
Marfli, whofud, he did not mind how they got them, for he 
purchafed them fairly from the inhabitants. 

Had you reafon to believe this practice had fubfifted before ? 

No j I cannot tell ; when I have gone into the woods I have met 
fome inhabitants, 30 or 40 in number, who fled always from me 

^ lth ° Ugh the y were armed; and, upon afking 
Mr. Marth s man the reafon of it, he told me that they were afraid 
of my taking them as prifoners. 

Can you inform the Committee, how the parents and relations 
of the captives before fpoken of, knew where they fhould find them 
an order to come and endeavour to effedt their releafe ? * 

No ; I cannot tell pofitively. 

Did any thing fall within your notice, when on the Gold Coaft 
which led you to conclude that the Slave Trade obftrudts the in- 
duftry and civilization of the natives of Africa ? 

^. es ’ J kave been almofl: upon every fettlement that belonged 
to the Enghfli on that coaft, and I found the culture always" in 
a higher degree where there was but little of the Slave Trade 

and juft the reverfe when the Slave Trade was carried on more at 


go into tiie interior 

country or tiie 

uia you 

Yes; I have been about five days journey inland at Secundee 
ahout 5° mdes; and about 15 or 16 miles at Appolonia, accom- 
panied by Lieutenant Williams of the Grampus. r 


What did you remark as to the date of cultivation and in- 
duftry of the natives inland, compared with what they were on 
the coad ? 

I found the inland every where well cultivated, whereas it is 
hardly any where cultivated on the fea fliore. 

On what parts of the fea fliore is there mod cultivation ? 

At Winnebah and Accra, as likewife at Goree; there are very 
beautiful cotton and indigo plantations at Goree. 

Inthofe parts of the interior country, which you faid you found 
well cultivated, were there many European commodities to be met 
with ? 

No ; I did not fee any. 

In particular, can you pofitively fay that European fpirits could 

not be had? _ _ . n , ~ 

Yes • I can pofitively fay they could not, for I wifhed very otten 

to have fome myfelf, and 1 could not get any, which convinced me 
that there were not any. 

What were the temper and difpofition of the inhabitants in the 

interior country before fpoken of ? . , A . 

By what I have feen of them they were remarkably indudrious, 
and on the lake of Appolonia they have built a whole village, con¬ 
fiding of feveral hundred houfes, fupported by poles, where they 
fettled for the fake of the fine ground and palm wine, palm trees 
crowing in that neighbourhood, and from thence they fupply in the 
rainy feafon the inhabitants of the feacoad with different vegetables 
and grain, palm wine, &c. 

Were they hofpitable and obliging, or the contrary ? 

They were hofpitable and obliging both to me and to my canoe 
people, which were blacks. 

What opinion did you form of the underdandings of the Negroes ? 
They had but little capacity in regard to manufactures; but were 
quick in learning languages. 

On what grounds did you think they had little capacity in regard 

to manufactures ? . . 

They had none amongd them of any kind, except at Goree, where 

they begin to weave cloth, and have almod abolifhed the Slave 
Trade; 1 mean in the part now belonging to the French. 


[ 222 ] 

Did any thing fall within your notice on any part of the coafl, 
w ich led \ ou to conclude that depredations are fometimes com- 
nut ed on the natives by the European traders ? 

Yes i on our beiflg abreafl Q f Cape La Hou, feveral canoes 
came alongfide of the Grampus, and defired that the colours 
might be ho.fted; finding that it was an Engliffi man of war, 
they then made not the lead hefitation to come on board. Com¬ 
modore Thompfon enquning the reafon, was told by them, in 
my prefence, and that of the whole ffiip’s company, that an Eng- 
lih Guinea trader had taken up, a fortnight previous to our arrival, 
fix canoes vvith men, which came to trade with provifions. The 
following day about ten leagues from this very place, feveral 
canoes approached us, but finding it was a man of war, they im¬ 
mediately retreated, for which we could not account; however, 
on our coming to Appoloma, I and Commodore Thompfon (then 
Captain Thompfon) were told by Mr. Buchanan, the refident at 
that place, that a Guinea-man was taken hold of in that latitude, 
the captain of the vefTel brought on fhore, tied to a tree, and flog¬ 
ged feverely for four days, in revenge for the depredation the 
captain of a former veffel was guilty of, which belonged, as I un- 
derftood from Mr. Buchanan, to a notorious kidnapper cf the 
rame of Griffiths This at once accounted for the inhabitants 
hying from us on finding us a man of war, thinking that we were 
acquainted with their revenge on that captain, and were therefore 
atraid that we might take our revenge on them. 

Did you, whilft at Secundec or Appolonia, fee any children 
among the captives that had been brought in ? * 

Yes, I did; there were four of them fent in the fame canoe 

andVr !° C rT C ° aft ? aftle ’ * Ccom P anied by Meffieurs Marfh 
and Roberts, refidents at that coad. 

Did you obferve any thing concerning the treatment of the Slaves 
that were kept m the fadories? 

They were chained day and night, and drove down to the fea- 
lide twice a day to be wafhed. 

Did you fee the /lores of the fadory, and did any thing particu¬ 
larly attrad your notice ? 6 “ 

Yes, I did; they were ffiewn me by Mr. Marfh, who made no 
ferupie of fhewing them to me; they confided of different kinds 
of chains made of iron, as likewife an inflrument made of wood, 
about five inches long, and an inch in diameter, or lefs, which I 

7 was 


[ 22 3 ] 

was told by Mr. Marfh was tbruft into a man’s mouth horizontally, 
and tied behind to prevent him from crying out, when tranfported 
at night along the country. 

Have they any domeftic Slaves in that part of the country ? 

I have obferved none in the inland country, for they behaved very 
mildly to their attendants; however, on the fea-fide there was a 
gieat difference. 

Do you mean, that you underftood from the natives they had no 
Slaves, or only that there were no perfons you could diflinguifh to 
be fuch by their being ill treated ? 

1 concluded only from their mild behaviour to their fervants 
that they had none, but I cannot tell whether they had or had 

Did you learn any thing concerning the way in which fuch Slaves 
are difpofed of at the fadtories on the Gold Coafl as were refufed by 
the European traders? 

They were purchafed for a trivial value, I mean of liquor, &c. 
and kept in the fadtory for mean employments. 

Can you give any information refpedting the natural produ&ions 
of Africa ? 

Yes; they conlift of various articles, as follows; cotton in abun¬ 
dance every where, of which I have got fpecimens, indigo like- 
wife, wild, dye roots of various kinds, a root called fooden ; this 
root dyes fcarlet, and the ftalks of it dye a beautiful yellow; feve- 
ral woods, with which the inhabitants dye their trinkets or fettifh, 
(a fort of facred trinket they have;) yams are cultivated and 
fweet potatoes, rice at Appolonia, millet of feveral forts, and 
pulfe likewife of various forts, oranges at Appolonia, both fweet, 
and lome tending to acidity, but not the Seville orange of Por¬ 
tugal, limes, bananas, plantains, cocoa nuts, palm trees, from 
which they tap the palm wine, and from the fruits of which 
they extradt the oil, which bears an immenfe price, both at 
Winnebah and Accra, black pepper, three fpecies of grains of 
paradife, drawings of which Sir Jofeph Banks has got in his 
poffeffion, cinnamon of two forts cn the ifland of St. Thomas, 
the one is not inferior to that imported from the Eafl Indies, 
and was fold in England for a higher price, on account of being 
frefh, the fetond is coarfe, and feemed to be only a fpecie of the 
Malabar caffia, cabinet wood in plenty, as likewife timber trees, 
efpccially one, a fpecies of the ticktonia grandis, which is con- 

2 M fidered 

[ «4 ] 

fidered in India as the moil eligible timber for thin building, the 
property of which is, that neither the worm touches it, nor is the 
iron corroded by it, for you find in all timbers the iron corrodes 
ealily, but in t his it does not corrode for a length of time ; I have 

feen iron which had been for 20 years in a veffel, which was as 
found as if juft put m. 

Is the timber tree you have juft mentioned in any confiderable 
quantity ? 1 

\ es it is; at Appolonia and Secundee in plenty, as likewife in 
every place where I have been ; but being but a very (hort time at 

any other place but Secundee and Appolonia, I had not time to 
examine the woods. 

mentioned 1 ? 13 "'" 8 *** fpecimenS of the fcvcraI articles you have 
Yes, I did. 

Have they any cardamums ? 

Yes, they have; I have fcen them at Dixcove in pretty large 
quantities; but I was not far up the country in that place: I ha-e 
not feen them any where elfe. ‘ 

Is afla foetida the produce of that country ? 

Yes; 1 have feme fpecimens of the ftalks now in my poiTeflion. 

memi0 " ed is the African indigo of a fine 

Yes, it is; I have likewife lome fpecimens of it. 

From your botanical experience, and from what you faw of the 
natural produdls of the foil of Africa, is i, your opinion Tha he in general, and alfo all other tropical produdLs mh'ht be 
cultivated fuccefs in that part of the world ? 

the I cmmr™ t b he -' ea - ft d ?“ b ‘ ^ f ° r lhe roil and «*>' Produce of 

tie °n y ’r be T n ‘," g r ° m Gorce t0 St - Thon ' as . varies but lit- 
lie, as likewife the climate and the pericdical feafons are the fame. 

wood? * be b ° d and c l* mate adapted for the produce of fandal- 

thafwheml hll 7 f L" Aft , ic ? where ,he foil is ,hc 35 

Guzzerat in the Eaftldiet" fanda| - w “ d . in Province of 


[ 22 5 ] 

Were the inftances frequent of the natives (hewing an unwil- 
lingnefs to come on board your (hip, until they found (he was a 
man of war ? 

They were unwilling to come on board, till they faw that we 
were a man of war. 

Did you fee any indigo manufactured in Africa ? 

I have feen manufactured indigo, but not indigo manufacturing. 

Where did you fee it ? 

At Appolonia. 

Did you fee any quantity manufactured ? 

Yes, I did—as likewife in a raw (late. 

Is there any quantity of it exported manufactured ? 

Not that I know of. 

Have you feen a great abundance of cotton growing ? 

Yes, I have. 

Do you know whether any great quantity has been exported ? 

I do not know that there is any exported. 

Can you fay that the manufactured indigo which you faw was 
manufactured in the country ? 

As I did not fee it myfelf manufacturing, I took it for granted, 
from what I had heard from the inhabitants of Appolonia, who 
gave the indigo to me. 

At what feafon of the year was you upon the coaft? 

Shortly after the rains, when the indigo began to decay; it was 
in November, December, and January. 

Does the furf run high upon the coaft at that time of the 
year ? 

At fome places; at Appolonia and Winnebah. 

Is it eafy then to land heavy goods ? 

A tor. or two; and that is only performed by the inhabitants in 
canoes built for that purpofe. 

Are the canoes often overfet ? 

At Appolonia pretty frequently, but ftldom any thing loft in the 


[ 226 ] 

To whom Was the cinnamon fold that you (peak of? 

It was fold at Portfmouth. 

What quantity of it was there? 

A fmall bundle. 

What weight ? 

That I cannot remember j but I fuppofe about four pounds. 

What fize were the cinnamon plants that you fpeak of at the 
Ifland of Saint Thomas ? 

. I l he y g row inland to a higher fize, from what I heard from the 
inhabitants; but thofe at the fea-fide were about 20 feet high, and 
I confider them only as fhrubs. 

Do they grow in any quantity ? 

By the appearance of the bark which was brought down to fell I 
conclude that there muft be a great quantity in the inland. 

Did you fee any number of them ? 

Yes; I favv a quantity of them. 

And then the Witnefs was dire&ed to withdraw. 


Veneris , 21 0 die Maii 1790. 

j\NTHONY PANTALEO HOW, Efquire, called in; and 

further examined. 

What is the difference between the cinnamon tree and the caflia 
tree ? 

They are quite of different genera ; the one belongs to the clafs 
Iaurus, the other the cafiia ; of thofe two trees the penera are not 
quite eftablifhed. 6 

What is the difference between the leaves of the two plants? 

Of the Iaurus the leaf is oblong, nerved, and fhining, fimple; of 
the cafiia the leaves are bipennate. 

Is the leaf of the cafiia equally broad with the leaf of the Iaurus ? 
No; it is quite a different leaf from the Iaurus j it is not unlike 
the Mimofa or fenfitive plant. 


[ 22 7 ] 

Will you, as a botanift, fay, that the cinnamon tree grows at St. 
Thomas ? 

Whether it is the fame cinnamon which grows on the coaft of 
India I cannot pofitively determine; but the bark, leaves, and the 
whole ftrutture of the tree is the fame as thofe brought from the Eaft 
Indies to Kew Gardens; the catfia is not unlike that which I have 
feen in the Eaft Indies. 

Have you feen the cinnamon tree growing in the Eaft Indies ? 

Yes, 1 have, at private gardens, both at Bombay and Cambay, 
brought by merchants as prelents from Ceylon. 

Did you ever fee it at Cevlon ? 

No; I have not been there. 

How is the foil on the Gold Coaft near the fea ? 

Within the reach of the furf it is every where fandy ; the Goree 
iflands are likewife fandy; but all the reft of the lettlements where I 
have been at, the ground confifts of a heavy loom or clay. 

What does it produce, as far as eight or ten miles inland from the 
fea ? 

Various woods which are ufed in dyes; and feveral of them are 
exported ; but for what purpofe I cannot pofitively tell. 

Is that country ftony or rocky ? 

About Appolonia it is rocky, as likewife at Winnebah and 
Accra; but the reft of the country where I have been in is every 
where fertile. 

Do you apprehend that the want of fertility about Appolonia is 
owing to the rockinefs <?f the country, or to their carrying on the 
Slave Trade ? 

It is naturally rocky within three miles of the coaft; but the 
inlands about ten or twelve miles from the fea-fide are very well 
cultivated, both with rice, yams, fweet potatoes, indigo, and 

Is the country there that produces thefe articles naturally 
fertile ? 

Yes; it is both fertile and water in plenty. 

When you faid you went up fifty miles in the country from Se- 
cundee, what fort of a road was there ? 

Within five miles of the coaft the country is mountainous and 
uncultivated, therefore the roads are very bad. 

3 jV" Are 

[ 228 1 

Are there any roads at all ? 

In parts, about five feet broad; but where the country is culti¬ 
vated, the roads are at fome parts from fifteen to twenty feet broad j 
I mean cut through the woods. 

In what manner is the produce of the country brought down to 
the fea ? 

I underftcod from Mr. Buchanan and Mr. Marfia it was brought 
down in the rainy feafon in canoes; I was not there at that 

Are there any navigable rivers on the Gold Coaft ? 

None that I know of; there is one at Accra, but not navigable 
except for fmall boats and canoes; there are two lakes, one at 
Secundee, and one at Appo'onia; the laft runs inland about twenty 
miles, but as to the other, it is not known to any European. 

On the Gold Coaft, have the natives any other method of bring¬ 
ing down the produce of the country, than on their heads? 

1 have feen them bring their produce as far as the lake extends at 
Appolonia every morning, in fmall canoes, rowed by a fingle wo¬ 
man but never faw them carry any thing in a bafket. 

How were articles of produce brought down to Cape Coaft Caftle 
from the inland country? 

I cannot tell. 

You mentioned a notorious kidnapper of the name of Griffiths j 
who was that man ? 

He was a trader on that coaft. 

On what part of the coaft ? 

Between Cape La Hou and Appolonia* 


Was he a Black man or a White man ? 

A White. 

Of what country ? 

I underftood from Captain Thompfon, who offered me a re¬ 
ward of £. ioo if I could catch him, that he was a native of 


What was his fituation at Cape La Hou ? 
A Slave Trader. 

[ 229 3 

Do you know any thing of him of your own knowledge! 

No; I do not. 

What nations trade chiefly at La Hou ? 

The English. 

i™ ,h« he was an EngUlh Slave Trader, and belonged to Lwer- 

Do you know the circumftance from your own knowledge! 

No; I do not. 

Of what country are you a native ? 

I am a Polander. 

When did you laft leave Africa ? 

The 15th of February 1786. 

T^mt with Captain Thompfon in the Nautilus, commiffioned by 

have been in England ever fince. 

On what parts of the Gold Coaft is the Slave Trade moftly car- 

rk ln°d,c neighbourhood of Cape La Hou, Secundee, Commenda, 
and Annamaboe. 

tt came vou to the knowledge of the village on the lake of 
Appo“nd “ha. it had been built and fettled for the purpofes 

y °l wentThere°rnyfelf by the order of Commodore Thompfon to 
_ r* • tbc fa£t whether the neighbourhood of that lake is fo 

ST-i *«i* H- SXi. I 

interpreter. Did 

Did you never hear that that village was built by the late kin* 
nni i Ion_er, for protedhon and fecurity againft the people of Axim & 
and Cape Three Points, with whom he was at war ? P * 

fn h CS ’ ' ’ aVe r ; Ca P ta ! n Thompfon informed me, that he was told 
fo by a rate refh lent of that fettlement in his firft vovage to Africa 
m the Hyaena; but in the fecond voyage h, ma, e p r fcular haT 
nes at the fort, and was told by Mr. Buchanan, thaf it was buih on 
account of the fertility of the country, thereto e I was (ent thereby 

told hhn XammC t lC pr0JUCe ~ and 1 fouiJd 11 ^ Mr. Buchanan had 

AMca? y ° U kn ° W WhCther Indig ° IS ° r is not ^anufadured in 
* b r;i S 0t 3 ^ uantitv of ? g iv ™ to me by the chief of that village 

Sni™; m *;:, f ma, ‘ ufaaured there; but 1 h -— 

:;',e m Q a f n ^7 d ftate is or is - 

I never underft od fo. 

Do the Portuguefe fet any value upon the cinnamon which vou 
fay is produced at the if] nd of Saint Thomas ? y 

i 1 from thc . i>or ' u v' fc ’ but fr ° m the 

trinS. k y s ,vl,i g them a few old deaths and feme 

^.dXnd 6 fo! nd ° f Sai "‘ Th ° maS be, ° ng ‘° ,he Portu S ucfc ? 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

/ 1 

Mr. NINIAN JEFFERYS, Mailer in the Royal Navy, fu- 

permtendmg (hips in ordinary at Portfmouth, called in • 
and examined. * 

Have you ever been in the Weft Indies, and when ? 

1 was at Jamaica in 1773, Tobago in 1774, Jamaica in 177, 
renada in 1776, Tortola in 1779, Barbadoes *and Saint Lucfa 


[ * 3 I I 

(in the Navy) in 1782, Antigua and Saint Chriftopher’s in 1783, 
and at Jamaica for a few days in January 1784- 

When you was at thofe iflands, what opportunities had you of 
making obfervations on the flotation of the Slaves ? 

In Jamaica in 1773, in Tobago in 1774, and at Jamaica in 
1775", 1 had ftveral opportunities (thofe were my farfl: three 
voyages), being employed as fecond mate in landing goods and 
taking off fugars from the different eftates of thofe iflands, chiefly at 

Have you ever feen Field Negroes at work in the ifland of 

Yes; frequently. 

Will you defcribe the manner in which they worked, as far as 
fell under your obfervation ? - 

I did not particularly attend to the mode of cultivating the 
land, but I obfcrvcd the Negroes at work in the field, with one 
or two White men looking after them, and a Black man or two, 
called a driver, keeping the whip conftantly cracking over their 
heads while at work, and fometimes lafhing them with it; which 
I thought a very opprefiive fituationj fometimes a White man 
whipping them. 

Had you opportunities of obferving great numbers of the 
Plantation Slaves during your different vifits to the Ifland of 

I have had frequent opportunities. 

Have you feen marks of fevere whipping on the bodies of many 
of thofe Negroes? 

The greater part of what I ever faw had marks of that kind, par¬ 
ticularly on the back. 

Did you take fo much notice of thofe marks, or fears, as to be 
able to fay, whether they muff have been the effect of feverer 
punifhments than you ever faw inflided on board a man of 

Yes; I can draw no comparifon of that—for the punifhments 
on board a man of war are not in the leaft to be compared with 

What is your reafon for fo thinking ? 

From what I have feen of the marks that have been left on 

3 O their 

[ 2 3 2 ] 

their bodies that there are wheals upon their backs that no time 

can erafe.—I never faw any thing of the kind at a man of war’s 

Have you ever feen Slaves bearing any other maiks of feveritv or 
cruelty ? 3 

Yes; I have feen them with their ears cut off, and underftood 
at the time it was done by, or by the order of their matters; I never 
law it done; I have alfo feen men with one of their hands cut off 

and have underttood it was for lifting it againtt, or ttriking a White 
man. ° 

Have you ever feen any Negro or Negroes tick, or part their la¬ 
bour apparently neglected and deftitute of nourifhment or W 
port ? r 

Yes i I have more than once feen them at an out-houfe or watch- 
houfe, feme diftance from the Negro towns, in a very miferable 
fituation j I wanted fome refrefltment myfelf, but was not able to 
get any thing mote than a little water to drink, and that was 
brackifh. I fpeak in this particular mttance as to Tobago. 

Have you ever feen Negroes who appeared to be part their la¬ 
bour in a difeafed condition lying about in the ttreets and roads io 

Yes, frequently ; and in the vicinity of Kingfton. 

Have you ever obferved any, and what difference between the 
domeftic and plantation Slaves in the iflands of which you have 
been fpeaking ? 3 

Yes, a very great difference; I have confidered the former as a 
nuifance from their numbers; the domettic Slaves are generally 
over-well fed, and in confluence faucy and impertinent; the 
plantation Slaves are a poor depreffed part of the human fpecies. 

Have you ever feen women with fucking infants working with 
the reft of the field gang ? ° 

Yes; frequently. 

Do yru know any thing of the manner in which the field Ne¬ 
groes are lodged ? 

What I have feen is, they are lodged in little huts with clayed 
walls, and the roof covered with cane trafh. 


[ 233 1 

Have you ever obferved beddiog of any, and what kinds in thefe 

hutS ? , r - 

I do not recollett to have leen any. 

TV,t m-,p Rlack tradefmen, fifhermen, boatmen, free Negroes, 
a „d D MuSauoS, tm t general ,n a better or worfe condrt.on than 

the planration Negroes ? 

In a much better. 

v m what vou faw of the plantation Slaves, did it appear to 
J'Z any 3 tair°cornparifon coGld be formed between then to- 

ation and that .^^^n^feHf ffefmen Tn^ land of liberty 
an^prowZn, and a fet of people who were treated in many re- 
fpefts like cattle. 

Have vou ever feen Slaves branded with the owner's marks? 

Thlve r“en Slaves branded , which I believed to be the .n.Uals 
of the owner’s name, or that of the eftate. 

Have vou ever heard the picking of grafs fpoken of in Tobago, 
or any ofThe other idands in which you have been, and how drd 

^In^omrrKnf converfafton^have ever nnderftood it to be oppref- 
five, for this reafon.that it encroached on the hours of reft. 

What have you nnderftood to be the mod common caufe for 
whichNegroes defer. ftom the plantations to whrch they belong? 

HI treatment. 

Do vou know what punifhment is inflidted on fuch Negroes when 

ret IhaJe feen Negroes at work with logs of wood fattened to their 
lees • I have feen them in the flocks, and I have alfo feen them 
wfh an iron collar about their necks, two perpendicular 
h( ok- one on each fide, which projedted out from the upper pa>t 
of the head, and 1 have ever underftood thofe pumfhments were 
inflidted on them for having run away. 

Can you fpeak as to the weight of fuch collars or logs ? 

No but I lh°uld fuppofe the collars, to the be ft of my recollec- 
,ion, an inch ,n circumference , 1 cannot (peak to the we.ght 

I 2 34 ] 

toSX™?. ten " p0U ” d! 5 but th * depend on the 

deemed the mXdeSle^LSons offte^S' 8 What T” 
of a plantation ? 4 “‘'"cations ot the manager or overfeer 

Yes; I always under flood that he was confidered thr h P a 
nager who could fend home the created: nnVmif tr ma - 
J have heard it mentioned, time after t?me^ ftf/T* a " d 

fent ^ore fugarsThan 

p£f rS "" d “-ft«Xe&“ «m- 

hav^e^mefemTw^STk” WhiK #»* fro “ ■<* *««» 

do not immediately recollefl. Y po ‘“ lvcl J' ,he managers, I 

° bfOTa, ™ S ° f *>» 

« «o S SS? J SSTitSS T herSl 

young man when among them. 7 ed tbar, being a 

Have you known any inflance or inflances of bmh c ■ •* ■, 

greatnefs of mind among the Negroes ? ^ fp‘nt and 

• aft ° n,fl " n gly fo. I was prefent at the execution nf C 

m Tobago, in the vear T~-jd ..,c p /- • , execution of feven 

.hey were then digged foVen flak! 7 T* Ch ° pp£d ° ffi 
trafh and dry wood was lighted xh t E ^*5’ con ^^ n g of 
burnt to death, , do■'« 

complain, cry, or do any thing that indicted frf ” murmur, 
named Chubb, in particular, was taken in */ /"'c^ th ™> 

iog, was tried about 000^ *e reft a^d j 0 ^ ,hat “°“- 
with the reft in the erZ l i V , ,” ,hus secured 

Chubb when his arm was cut off- he^retchM h^ * h * aforefaid 
Wd it upon the block, pulled up .he flee e 7 

“ but 

[ 235 ] 

“ but to-morrow I (ball be like that/' kicking up the duft with 
his foot (fo help me God—that is not what he faid, but what 
I now fay) ; the imprefiion this made upon my mind no time 
can ever erafe; Sampfon, who made the eighth, and a Negro 
whofe name I do not recoiled, was prefent at this execution. 
Sampfon next morning was hung in chains alive, and there he 
hung till he was dead, which, to the beft of my recolledion, 
was feven days; the other Negro was fentenced to be fent to the 
Mines in South America, and I believe was fent accordingly i 
neither of thofe two, during the time of the execution, (hewed any 
marks of concern or difmay that 1 could obferve; a (tronger in¬ 
ftance of human fortitude 1 never faw. 

Have you known any inftance of newly-imported African Ne¬ 
groes being difordered in their minds ? _ . 

Yes; 1 knew one particular inftance: Being at Jamaica in Ja¬ 
nuary 1784, my brother, who then refided at Kingfton, purchated 
a new Negro Girl; he had no fooner brought her to his houfe, 
where 1 then was, than his wife and 1 perceived (he was in fane i 
I afterwards returned with him to the vendue matter, with whom 
,ny brother remonftrated, and defired to have his money returned i 
but he was informed that could not be. 

Was your brother able to prevail on the importers of that Slave 

to take her back ? 


And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

And being again called in; 

He was afked. 

Do you know that your brother had any convention receding 
this woman, with the mate of the vtffel in which (he was im¬ 
ported from Africa ? 


Did your brother inform you that he had any fuch conver- 
fation ? 

And the queftion being objeded to ; 

I The Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 



[ 236 ] 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put. 
That the Witnefs be called in, and afked the faid 

It pafled in the negative. 


And the Witnefs being again called in; 

He was afked, 

Did you hear the converfation between your brother and the mate 
of the veflel ? 

I was prefent in the room, and heard them converting j and mv 
brother informed me of the fubftance of the converfation. 

And then the Witnefs was dire&ed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put 
That the AVitnefs be not permitted to give evidence of 
that converfation, he not having heard it; 

It was refolved in the affirmative. 

Then the Witnefs being again called in; 

He was afked. 

Did you obferve, when in the Iflands of which you have fnoken 
y a ?P ar “! diff ' rc " cc kmeen .he number of children Lo J 

: domeftic and Free fJ-omM « n a -.» 

wharfs ; they are known by the name of wharfin 
even feen them in a dying fituation. 

What do you mean by a diftreffed fituation ? 
, U 'r" a '.t d ,:. 3 " d ,,!?? re ^ ly , in wam », and »bout on the 

igers; nay, I have 


[ 237 1 

Is It ufual for king’s (hips to take fuch Teamen on board? 
I believe not, efpecially in time of peace. 

Why will they not do it ? . 

From a regard to their (hip s company, 
any contagious didemper into the (hip. 

that they (hould not bring 

Are vou of opinion that fuch Teamen as you have been fpeaking 
of were able to do the duty of a merchantman ? 

I am of opinion they were not. 

How do you know that thefe Teamen came out of Guinea 

<hi l P have known it from themfelves ; from their own information 
to me. 

Did you ever fee inftances of feamen difcharged from other 
trades lying about in a fimilar (ituation ? 

No; I never did. 


From your knowledge of thefe and fimilar circumftances, are 
ou of opinion that the Slave Trade is a nurfery for Teamen ? 

I am of opinion that it is not by any means. 

From your experience of the Weft India Trade, do you or do 

you not think that that is a nurfery for feamen ? 

Yes, in Tome meafure, but not fo much as other trades I hav 

been in. 

Do you think that the Weft India Trade is in any degree fo 
deftrudtive to the lives and health of the feamen employed in it as 

the Slave Trade ? 

No j by no means. 

What (ituation are you in now ? 

A mafter in the navy. 

How long have you been in your prefent (ituation ? 
Ten years and upwards. 

How long was you in Jamaica in 1773 - 
About four months. 




t * 3 S ] 

Of what age was you at that time l 
About 19. 

Where did you refide when you was in Jamaica ? 
On board the fhip I then belonged to. 

On three or four; I rcfided not above a day and a night at a time, 
How long were you in Tobago in 1 77a ? 

nrv 1— ft ' 11 G . y /T' 

To the beft of my rccolledtion, about four months. 

Where did you refide then chiefly ? 

My chief refidcnce was on board the fhip I then 
ut I rcfided feme time at a friend’s houfe in the cour 

Was that on a Sugar plantation ? 


How long were you in Jamaica in 1775? 

About four months, to the beft of my rccolletfion. 

Where did you refide ? 

My chief refidence was on board the fhip I beloi 
metimes afhore at Kingfton, for a day or two togerhi 

What fituation were you in at that time? 

Second mate. 

Did your fhip load at Kingfton ? 


I was not on above two or three ai 
there above a night or two at a time. 

Were they fugar plantations on which you refided ? 


[ 239 3 

Does what you have faid refpe&ing the mode of working the 
Negroes relate to Tobago only, or to the other Iflands ? 

To Tobago only. 

Do you mean to fay, that the greater part of the plantation 
Negroes that you favv in Tobago were marked with the whip ? 


On how many plantations were you on the Ifland of Tobago ? 

I travelled through a great part of the Ifland; there 1 made my 
obfervationsj I never continued but two or three nights on one 
eftate, befides that houfe of my friend’s, which was not a fugar 


For the commifiion of what crime was the punilhment inflided 

t»n the Negro, of having his hand cut off ? 

I was informed that it was for linking a White perfon; I did 
not fee it •, I can only fpeak from information. 

Was it inflided by the laws of the Tfland, or by the will of the 

owner ? , , IfI , 

I did not knows but I believe by the laws of the llland. 

You have ftated, “ Th*t you reckoned the domeftic Slaves a 
“ nuifance from their number, and that they were fo 'well fed as 
“ to be faucy, and that the Field Slaves were depreffed f which 
do you apprehend to be more ufeful to the owner, the domeftic 
Slaves, or the Field Slaves on the plantation ? 

The Field Slaves. 

Can you then account for the planters keeping Slaves to be a 
nuifance from their numbers, and feeding them to that excels, 
and treating -their Field Slaves in a different manner, when the 
latter are fo much more advantageous to their owners ? 

I cannot account for it. 

When you ftated the converfation wherein the merits of a ma¬ 
nager were canvalfed, where was that converfation held ? 

In Kingfton j and one or two inftances on board the fhip I be¬ 
longed to. 

Was that doftrine fupported by planters, or by thofe who had 
the immediate care of fugar plantations ? 

I heard it fupported by gentlemen about Kingfton, and by 
r Q © White 

t 2 4 ° ] 

White men from the eftates, but I did not conceive them to be 


What was the crime for which the men were burnt in Tobago 
in the year 1774 ? 

Murder, and deftroying the property on the eftate. 

Do you not know that there is an hofoital in Kingfton, Jamaica, 
for the reception of Tailors and tranfient poor ? 

There m3y—I never faw it. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Vmeris , 21° die Mail 1790. 

Mr. NINIAN JEFFERYS called in ; and further 


Of what country are you a native? 

Of the town of Berwick upon Tweed, 

Of what age are you ? 

Between thirty-fix and thirty-ieven. 

On board what fhip or Blips did you make your three firft 
voyages to the Weft Indies ? 

In the Dawkins, the Reiolution, and the Dawkins. 

In what capacities did you ferve on board thofe fliips ? 

My firft voyage I was before the maft, but confidered as an 
officer, from the ftrong recommendations I had to the captain > 
the fecond and third voyages I was fecond mate. 

To what Illands did you go in thofe three voyages? 

To Jamaica, Tobago, and Jamaica. 

in i^° W ?° n ^ WCrC ^° U 8t J arna * ca y° ur fr** voyage to that illand 
in 1773 

About four months. 



[ 2 4 I 3 

How long were you in Jamaica in your fecond voyage there in 

1775 ? , 

About four months. 

How long were you at Tobago in 1774? 

Near four months, to the beft of my recollection. 

At what port in Jamaica did your (hip load in each of her 
voyages ? 

At Kingfton. 

What port at Tobago ? 

We went all round the ifland to the different bays. 

Had you frequent opportunities, when at Jamaica in 1773 and 
1775, of making obfervations upon the fugar plantations in that 
ifland, with refped to the manner of cultivation, and of the ma¬ 
nagement and ceconomy towards the Slaves on thole eftates ? 

No; my obfervations with refped to the management of Field 
Negroes, chiefly related to Tobago. 

Had you, at Tobago, frequent opportunities of making the ob¬ 
fervations above mentioned upon the fugar plantations in that 
ifland ? 

The obfervations I made in Tobago were chiefly relative to the 
manner of treating the Slaves; I never made any particular obfer¬ 
vations as to the manner of cultivating the land. 

Can you Hate the names of the owners of any eftates in Tobago, 
upon which you actually made any of thofe obfervations ? 

I never attended to the names of the eftates, nor the proprietors; 
I made my obfervations in travelling from Sandy Point to Queen’s 
Bay, and from Sandy Point again to Granby Fort, two or three 
times, on my way to the houfe of my friend, who was iurgeon-ge- 
neral to the garrifon. 

What was the name of that gentleman ? 

Dr. Hawkins. 

How far did he live from the town, and from where your fhip 
ufually lay at that part of the ifland ? 

I do not particularly recoiled the diftance, but believe it was 
more than ten miles from Sandy Point to Dr. Hawkins’s houfe, at 
a Mountain (as they called it, that is a place in the mountains) near 


[ 2 42 ] 

Granby Fort; it was a little property he had there, but not a fugar 

What was the greateft fpace of time you ever actually fpent upon 
a fugar plantation in Tobago, and upon whofe eftate was it ? 

I have been near a week at a time on the eftate of Little Courland, 
the proprietor, or chief gentleman upon the eftate (I do not know 
whether he was the pioprietor or no) was Stuart Macvie, Efquire; 
I have frequently fpent a night at a time in the boiling-houfe of 
different eftates, whofe names I do not immediately recoiled; I was 
then waiting for fugars being carted down. 

How many plantations in the whole have you ever vifited and 
refided upon for any time at Tobago? 

I cannot recoiled at this diftance of time. 

How far from the fea was Little Courland eftate ? 

Not more than a quarter of a mile. 

How many punifhments did you fee inflided upon the Negroes, 
while you were at Mr. Macvie’s ? 

I never faw any. 

How many Negroes were there upon that eftate ? 

I do not know particularly; but I believe there were at that time 
about 200. 

How many punifliments did you ever adually fee inflided upon 
Negroes on any plantation in Tobago ? 

I do not recoiled any regular punifhments, except thofe men who 
were puniflied by death. 

Did thofe men fuffer by a fentence of the public law of the ifland, 
or by the arbitrary will of their matters ? 

I believe by the fentence of the law. 

Do you know what was the offence of the Negro, who, inftead 
of fuffering death, was baniflied to the mines in South America; 
or, upon what account, if his crime was equal to that of the others, 
his fentence was changed from death to banifhment ? 

I do not know; but I believed at the time it was his years, being 
very young. b 

Was it upon plantations, or where elfe, that you faw Negroes 
with their ears cut off? ° 

It was in Kingfton market in Jamaica. 



[ 2 43 ] 

How do you know it was done by their mailers, or by their 
Iunderftood fo at the time from general report. 

Did you hear to whom thofe Negroes belonged refpeaively ? 
I did not; I never a(ked. 

Who were the owners of the (hip Dawkins, and who com¬ 
manded her when you went to Jamaica ? 

I believe (he was chiefly owned by tradefmen in London,^the 
matter's name was Alexander Stupart, a brother officer of mine. 

When did you quit the merchants’ fervice, and enter into the 

na My laft voyage in the merchants’ fervice was in the year 1779 ; 
I became a matter in the navy in January 1780. 

Are you a matter and commander in the navy, or only a 

matter ? 

Only a matter. 

When you were at Jamaica in the year 1784, what (hip were you 

on board of as matter ? 

The Iphigenia frigate. 

Had you frequent opportunities, 
vifning and making obfervations upon 
of eftates and Slaves in that ifland ? 

whilft there in that year, of 
the conduct and management 

1 had not. 

Can you fpeak from your own perfonal knowledge and obferva- 
tion as y to the conduit of planters, and the Slaves belonging to 
them, in the iflands of Barbadoes, Grenada, Antigua and Saint 
Chriftopher’s, and the other iflands you have mentioned ? 

No; I cannot. 

Did, or did not, the Negroes on the eftate over which Mr. 
Macvie prefided, and on which you were during your flay at To- 
wo, appear to be in a far more comfortable fituatton than the ge¬ 
nerality of the Slaves you faw in that ifland i 

Much more fo than any Negroes 1 ever faw in the courfe of my 
being in the Weft Indies; Mr. Macvie appeared to me to be a fa- 

ther to bis Slaves. 

When you were in Jamaica, did you ever fee Negroes whipped i 
Yes. Will 

[ 244 3 

Will you fpecify the place, and defcribe the mode of inflicting 
the whipping ? 

On my firft voyage to Jamaica, being a young man, I ufed to 
get up early on Monday morning to fee the Negroes flogged on the 
wharfs, which I faw from the fhip, we being then not"more than 
200 or 300 yards from the wharf at Kingfton ; the mode of pu- 
nifhing them was, their hands were made faft to the hook of the 
crane, and their feet fattened to a weight or two ; the crane was 
then hove up to ftretch their hands, and prevent them from mov¬ 
ing about while they are flogged ; in this manner I faw them 
fi°gg c d, a °d afterwards their backs prickled with a fmall buffi, 
which was the manner I ever faw them flogged there, to the beft of 
my recolleftion. 

Were they always brought to one particular place on the wharf; 
or were the whippings inflicted, fometimes on one part of the wharf,, 
and fometimes on another ? 

They were brought to the crane on the wharf; there is only one 
crane generally on a wharf. 

By whofe hands was this puniffiment inflicted ? 

By a Black man ; but I do not know who he was. 

Do you know whether this puni(hment was the conlequence of 
a judicial fentence, or inflicted by the private order of their 
maflers ? 

I really did not know. 

Do you recolleCt the number of laflies that were received ? 

I do not. 

At the time the Slaves were whipped, did you fee round them 
any officers of juitice, fuch as beadles or conftables ? 

No; not to my knowledge. 

You have mentioned feeing at Jamaica feamen lying about the 
wharfs in great diflrefs; did you ever fee in the fame ifland any 
feamen carried to be interred, and under what circumflances ? 

Yes ; I have feen the Blacks carrying one or two of tho'e 
people that I defcribed as wharfingers, to a burying-place near 
Spring Path; the Blacks themfelves told me, “ It was poor Buchra 



[ 2 45 ] 

Did they do this at their own fuggeftion, or was it by the di¬ 
rection of their matters ? 

I do not know; but I believe of their own accord. 

What reafon have you for believing fo ? 

I do not recoiled to have enquired at the timej but it (truck me 
fo; I have no particular reafon. 

At this place where you have faid you faw the Negroes 
whipped, did you ever fee any other fort of punithment in¬ 
flicted ? 

I do not recoiled to have feen any. 

At the ifland of Tobago did you ever know the furf run fo high 
as to prevent your landing ? 

Yes I have known it to have run fo high for two or three days 
together that we could not land or take off goods. 

What was the inftrument with which the Negroes were 
whipped ? 

I generally obferved what they there call a cow-fkin. 

Will you defcribe it ? 

It is a piece of cow or bullock’s hide twitted or plaited together, 
and when dry it becomes exceeding hard. 

What is the greateft number of lathes you have ever known or 
heard of a feaman in his Majefty’s fervice receiving on board, or 
from fhip to fhip ? 

I recoiled feeing a feaman receive three dozen of lathes, with 
the boatfwain’s cat, at the gangway—their floggings from fhip to 
fhip I never attended to—indeed I do not recoiled being upon deck 
more than once when a man was flogged along-fide, or trom fhip to 
lhip—and then I recoiled no particulars of the flogging, except this, 
that the man fainted. 

Are not all hands turned upon deck to fee the punifhment in- 
Aided from fhip to {hip, as the man comes along-fide ? 

Yes i I believe they are. 

When a feaman is flogged from thip to fhip, are not his hands 
and perfon fo confined as to prevent his moving—and defcribe the 
manner and pofition in which he receives his punifhment? 

His hands and feet are tied to prevent his moving—but other 
particulars of the manner I cannot juftly defcribe. 

r On 

[ 246 ] 

On what part of his body does he receive the punifhment ? 

On his back. 

Did you, or did you not, underftand that thefe ufual punifh- 
ments of Negroes on Mondays, which you fpeak of to have feen 
on the wharfs at Kingfton in Jamaica, were inflidted by order of 
the magiftrates, for irregularities and offences committed the pre¬ 
ceding day ? 

I always underftood they were inflidted for crimes committed on 
the preceding week—but never knew by whofe order. 

Queftion repeated. 

I did not underftand that it was by order of the magiftrates. 

Did you, or did you not, underftand and believe that thefe pu- 
nifhments on Mondays, from their being fo periodical and ftated, 
were for public offences ? 

No—I was rather led to believe it was by the order of their 
mafters or miftrefles, but I do not recolkdt ever making any par¬ 
ticular enquiries on that head. 

Was it then a cuftom for mafters or miftreffes of Slaves in King- 
fton, colledtively, to defer the punifhments of their Slaves for of¬ 
fences committed in a week, to one day in the week only? 

I did not know. 

Did you ever fee any Negroes punifhcd upon the plantations in 
Jamaica ? 

No; I never did. 

Do yon, or do you not, know, that there is a defcription of per- 
fon in Jamaica, who is called a Jumper ? 

I have heard that there is at Kingfton—but I have never heard 
that there was fuch a perfon on the eftates—a man that punifhes 
the Negroes, and has fo much for his trouble. 

Do you mean, that this Jumper is a public officer, who ex¬ 
ecutes the fenrence of the law, or that he is employed by the 
mafters of Negroes to whip Slaves according to their particular 

I never knew how, or by whom, he was employed in particu¬ 
lar—but only in a general fenl'e, that he was employed to whip the 

And then the Witnefs was diredled to withdraw. 


[ 2 47 J 

The Reverend THOMAS GWYNN REES called in, and 


Have you ever been in the Weft Indies, when, and in what ca¬ 
pacity ? 

I went to the Weft Indies as Chaplain in the Princefs Amelia; 
we arrived at Barbaboes the latter end of December 1782. 

Did you make any obfervations on the fituation of the Slaves in 
the iiland of Barbadoes ? 

I did ; in confequence of being informed in England how they 
were treated in the Weft Indies. 

What opportunities had you of making thofe obfervations ? 

By going afhore almoft every day, and walking about part of the 

Did you vilit a conliderable part of the ifland of Barbadoes, for 
the exprefs purpofe of making obfervations of the kind alluded 
to ? 

I did; in thofe parts of the ifland within four or five miles of 
Bridge Town ; I went to the plantations that we could go to in the 
morning and return in the evening to the fhip. 

What was the general appearance of the Negroes whom you faw 
on the different plantations which you vilited ? 

They appeared to me to be in a very bad fituation. 

Did you make any enquiries refpe&ing their food ? 

1 did; but I cannot particularly fpeak to the quantity. 

What led you to make thole enquiries ? 

From the appearance of the Negroes. * 

What was there in the appearance of the Negroes which led you 
to make thofe enquiries ? 

The ftate they appeared in ftruck me with the imprefiion that 
they were not in general well fed. 

What obfervations did you make refpe&ing their clothing and 

The Negro Slaves in general have a fmall rag to cover their 
nakednefs; fome had breechts or trowfers; as to their lodging, 

3 S they 


r 348 ] 


they had finall huts covered with cane leaves, as far as I could 
judge from their appearance; their furniture confided of ftools or 
benches ; beds or bedding I law none in thofe houfes I was at; they 
fie-1 on a kind of board a little raifed from the ground, and lbme 
on the ground. 

Had you frequent opportunities of feeing gangs of Negroes 
working on the plantations ? 

I faw three or four gangs, or more, at different times. 

• - 1. 

In what manner was the work conduced? 

The firff that 1 faW were working with hoes in their hands, 
or mattocks, with a Negfro driver alur them with a whip in his 
hand ; they worked all in a row, making of final) holes to put corn 
in, as far as I recollcdl. 

Was there a driver attending every gang whom you faw at 
work ? 

Yes, there was. 


Did you obferve him making any ufe of his whip on the Negroes 
while at work ? 

Yes, more than once; particularly in the firff; gang I law; one 
of the women appeared to be with child, an 1 rather behind the 
reft when at work; he called to her to come on, or to work on, 
or fomething to that purpofe, and in a few' minutes afterwards 
went back to her with the whip, and ftruck her up towards her 

Did you obferve any Negroes working in the fields with iron 
collars or chains ? 

I did; I law three with iron collars in one gang, and one with 
a piece of a chain to his leg. 

Did you under (land, or were you informed, and by whom, 
whether pregnant women were obliged to work equally with the 
other Negroes in the gang ? 

I afked one of the Negroes who was with child herfelf, whether 
fne was forced to work as much as the reft, and flie faid yes. 

Did you obferve women with fucking infants working in the 
field ? 

I faw children juft by where they were working in bafkets, 

and \ 

[ 249 ] 

and feme on the ground, of from half a year to three or four years 
of age, and faw the mother giving fuck to one of them. 

Do you recoiled any inftance of a woman chained to a block, and 

working in that fituation ? . ... • 

I do : in my walk out one morning I went into a fugar null; toe 
firft otr.ed that ftruck me was a young girl from between twenty to 
thirty fas far as I could judge) chained to a large block within reach 
of the mill, which (he was obliged to feed with fugar cane I 
afked her how long (lie was to fuffer that pumlhmeat; (he (aid tor 
a twelvemonth. I then afked her/ne occahon of her puntihment; 
(he faid it was becaule (he ran away from her matter, and that he 
had ufed her badly. I then afked her how long (he had been 
chained there ; f he faid two months already. 1 farther afked her 
where fhe (lent; (he faid, (lie could go no where from where (he 
was, and that fhe was forced to he on the ground. I enquired 
what fuftennnee (he had ; fhe faid fhe lived on the cane juice ; the 
had very little befides, which was confirmed by one of tne slaves 
in the fame mill. 

Do you recollect any inttance, in which you found a Negro with 
marks of punifhment of extraordinary feverity ? 

I was walking out about half a mile or a mile from Bridge Town 
in B .rbadoes, and I heard the groans cf a perfon at a little inftance 
from me. I went up to her, and enquired what was the matter 
with her; (he told me (he had been flogged for running away from 
her mafier; that fhe was flogged to Inch a degree that fhe could 
hardly move from where fhe was. I defired her to let me fee the 
marks where ihe was flogged (fhe was lying before, I fliould have 
faid, on her left afide)—(he turned on her right fide; the left ilde, 
that was down before, appeared in a mortifying ttate, and almoft 
covered with worm'. I then afked her if fhe could eat any thing, 
and flie faid fhe could if fhe had any victuals. I called to a Negro 
that was going by, and begged of him to take fome money, and 
so into the town and fetch her what he could get to eat; I promifed 
him at the fame time to pay him for his trouble, which 1 did before 
he fetched the provificns. I then left her for a few hours, and went 
faither into the ifland. On my return, I faw her again, and afked 
her if the man had brought her any thing from Bridge Town, and 
fhe faid yes, and appeared very thankful for it. In a day or two 
after (I am not lure which) I went to the place where I had left her, 
in hopes to have heard that fhe had been taken care of by the matter; 
there were fome Negroes coming by, of whom I enquired if they 
had feen or heard any thing of the Negro that was there in fo much 

[ 2 5° ] 

didrefs the day before; they told me (he was dead, and" earned 
away to be buried. 

And then the Witnefs was diredied to withdaw^ 


Sabbati , 2 2° die Maii 1790. 

1 H E Reverend THOMAS GWYNN REES called in. 

Upon the Refumption of the Examination, the lad Quef. 
tion and Anfwer being read over;. 

Mr. Rees proceeded r 

There is one circumflance, in addition to what I faid yefierday, 
wh’ch is—The obfervation that a gentleman (who was in company 
with me) and myfelf made, that whoever inflitfed that punifliment 
upon her would have done a deed of charity to have put her out 
of the world at once, inflead of leaving her in the fituation we 
found her. 

Who was the perfon that was with you ? 

A gentleman of the name of Vivian, the Purfer of the Princefs 
Amelia, the drip to which I belonged. 

Where did you find this woman lying, and how came die 
there ? 

We found her behind fome bufhes, a few yards from the road- 
iide ; (he was endeavouring, as (he told us, to go into Bridge Town 
but could go no farther than where we found her. 

Did you very particularly obferve the date of her fide ? 

From the view I took of it, it appeared to be mortified_There 

were dripes and wounds befides. 

Did it appear to ycu, and your companion, that (he was likely 
to die in confequence of the ill-treatment (he appeared to have re- 
cejved ? 

From the view we took of her it appeared impodible for her to 

recover without immediate medical afnftance. 


[ 251 ] 

How long did you flay with her ? 

About, I fuppofe, three quarters of an hour. 

How long did you remain on your ftation after this circumftance 

1 fuppofe about a fortnight or three weeks, but I am not 

Were you frequently on fhore afterwards ? 

1 fuppofe every day, at fome time of the day. 

Did you ever hear of any public enquiry being made refpedhng 
this tranfadlion ? 

I did not. 

You faid yefterday, “ That you faw three or four gangs of Ne¬ 
ff oroes, or more, at different times. ’ Did you mean in that an- 
fwtr, that vou only faw three or four gangs of Negroes at work 
during the whole time that you (laid at Barbadoes, or that you faw 
about that number every time you went on fhore? 

About that number every time I went on fhore;—a great many 
more in the whole. 

Have you ever feen Negroes returning from their work with 
bundles of grafs ? 

1 have many times in the evenings; I alked one of them in par¬ 
ticular what it was for ? He told me it was for his mailer's cattle, 
and that if he did not procure it he fhould be flogged. The bun¬ 
dles appeared to me to be a kind of coarfe grafs. 

Did you underftand that the picking of grafs made any confider- 
able addition either to their labour or to the length of time they 
were employed? 

I think it mud from the appearance of the part of the aland that 
I faw, as the grafs did not appear to be in plenty. 

You have faid, “ That you more than once obferved the driver 
“ whipping the Negroes while at work;” do you or do you not 
mean to fay that the praQice was common as far as your obferva- 

tion went ? . , 

It was a common practice as far as I faw, and indeed as I heard 


Did you obferve, in the ftreets and roads about Bridge Town, 
1 3 T any 

[ 2 5 2 ] 

any inftanccs of fuperannuated or difabled Negroes lying about ap¬ 
parently deferred and begging; were thofe inftances frequent, aid 
what was the appearance of fuch perfons? H 

I think it impoffible to walk about any length of time without 
feeing f ome of the Negroes either fitting or walking about appa¬ 
rently in great d.ftrefs, feme with the leprofy, or fomething like the 
leprofy, fome enfeebled through age, and others who have loft 
tneir limbs, begging about the ftreets. 

Did you obferve, that the marks of former whippings were fre- 
quentiy to be feen on the backs of the plantation Slaves, and were 

they fuch as indicated the pumfhment had been inflitfted with anv 
great feverity? di V 

thl'L; prr frequently.obe feen; the fears or the wheals upon 
their backs appearing to us the remains of a very fevere flogging. 

Have you ever feen feamen flogged on board a man of war? 

A great number of times, particularly in running the gauntlet 
which is a violent flogging. 6 K CIer » 

Did you everobferve marks of equal feverity on their bodies ? 

1 did not. * 

w • | 

of“m y e°nV VCr 3nyn,acks of form " on the backs 

1 have; bur the wounds did not appear near fo deep nor the 
wheals rife fo high above the Ik in, nor were the fears fo lon^ 

Have you feen any Negro dances ? 

1 went one Sunday after fervice on fthose, purpofdy to fee them 
dance, but I found a difference in thofe that were dJncii g • f orne 

appearing better drefTed than others.—On enquiring the reafoHf 

it, they told me that thofe that were well drafted’ were domeftic 
fertrarits, and the others the field Slaves. domeftic 

ijfcr mean that they daflced ia the fame> ° r ;n different 


They danced in different companies at the time that I ohferved 



of their y dr“fs ? rcrve *"* ° ther d!fferen « bet "'®n them, betides that 

*J h * 0fe r e " dl dreffed a PP eared better in their coume- 
nances, and in fpints. u l lc 


[ 2 53 ] 

From your obfervation of, and intercourfe with the Negroes 
ha.e you any reafon to think that they are naturally deficient either 
in reelings or in capacity? J 

They appeared to me to be as reafonable as any other being what- 
fee e iing flderlng educatlon )» and denied not to be deftitute of 

thS?iTSt know ° f “y inftances which induced you to believe 

te of fcci;? had “ fe ' ing ‘ han Wl ’" e » • fail- 

I do not know of any. 

From the general appearance of the Plantation Slaves, and the 
knowledge you obtained of their condition, do you think that any 

fair coin pardon can be drawn between their fituation and that of the 
labouring poor of this country ? 

/ * hink there is no comparifon to be drawn between them; 

vided for° Ur,ng P °° r ha PP ier here in England, and better pro- 

. Do y°u mean that they are fo much 
vided for, that there is no comparilon 
them ? r 

I think they are. 

happier and better pro¬ 
to be drawn between 

BaSadoesT 1 ‘ n ° ther ifland In the Weft IndIes befides 
Yes; St. Lucia. 

How long were you there? 
Between two and three months. 

* f ? dad J' ou an y opportunities of obferving the condition of the Plan¬ 
tation Slaves on that ifland? 

I had—-they appeared to me to be very much in the fame fitua¬ 
tion as thofe at Barbadoes. 

You have faid, “ That you made obfervations upon the fitua- 
*! t«on of the Slaves in the ifland of Barbadoes, in confequence 
of having been informed in England how they were treated 
in the Weft Indies. From what you obferved when vou 
were yourfelf in the Weft Indies, did you form a more or a lefs 
favourable opinion of the fituation of the Slaves than you ha’d 

done from the information you received before vou left this 
country ? 3 


I had 

[ 2 54 ] 

T had no idea, from what I heard while in England, that their 
fituation was fo bad as I found it to be. 

Did you ever hear any conversation while at Barbadoes refpedting 
the difference between breeding and buying Slaves? 

1 Temember a converlation that paffed at Mx. Prettyjohn s on that 
fubjefl; 1 aflced him, whether they had not Negroes enough born 
on the Jfland without lending to Africa for them, and whether po¬ 
pulation was encouraged? Mr. Prettyjohn anfwerod. That they 
could not encourage them more than they did, as it was not worth 
the while. 

Did Mr. Prettyjohn mention any particular means that had been 
ufed to encourage population ? 

I do not recolkdt that he did. 

Did you ever hear, when at Saint Lucia, any opinion given re¬ 
fpedting the comparative advantage of living under the French or 
the EngliJh government? 

I did by four or five of the French planters; they expreffed them- 
felves, that they ffould have been very happy if the Jfland was 
continued in the hands of the Englifli, and they wiflied that it ne¬ 
ver might be reffored. 

How long was you at Barbadoes in the whole ? 

I do not recolledt exadtly, but I believe about five or fix weeks. 

Who commanded the Princels Amelia? 

Admiral Sir Richard Hughes, and under him C ptain Rey¬ 

Can you flate the names of the proprietors of any of the fugar 
plantations which you vifited at Barbadoes ? 

I really do not recolledt them, it is fo many years fince. 

Did you ever lodge a night with any planter upon his eftate ? 

We flept one or two times on Ihore about four miles from Bridge 
Town, but the perjon’s name I do not recolledt. 

Was it a fugar effate that you lodged at? 

As far as 1 recolledl it was. 

Did you fee a boilinghoufe or mill upon it? 

There was a boiling houfe, which was the firfl: I faw. 


t 2 55 ] 

^ . T « 1 

How many of thofe eftates do you recollect to have feen ? 

I did not charge my memory with them. 

Do you think you were upon a fcore ? 

No; I fuppofe not. 

Are there many fugar eftates within four or five miles of Bridge 

I cannot tell how many. 

From the daily walks you took in the vicinity of Bridge Town, 
can you fiy, whether from the culture and produce of the lands, 
moftly within the diftance you have mentioned from Bridge Town, 
the property did or did not feem to belong to a variety of pro¬ 
prietors in tenements and frnall quantities of land, and to be 
moftly cultivated in potatoes, caflada, Guinea corn, and other 
provifions ? 

How it was divided I know nothing about, as I made no en¬ 
quiry into it; the chief produce that I faw was the corn and cane 
plots; I faw but very little potatoes or caflada. 

As you feemed to be fo anxious to be informed of the fituation of 
the plantation Slaves, of whom did you make your inquiries con¬ 
cerning the food, raiment, lodging, and other neceflaries they were 
furnifhed with ? 

I made but little inquiry refpetting their food, only I was told 
by one of the Negroes, that their chief food was from the corn 
and cane juice—refpedting their clothing, their huts, and their 
manner of reft, or fleeping, I got all the knowledge from my own 

Did it never occur to you to gain as authentic information as you 
could upon this fubjedt from Mr. Prettyjohn, whom you have men¬ 
tioned, or from any other gentleman whom you might judge able 
to give you the moft difinterefted account of thefe matters? 

It was my intention, after feeing all that I could about the ifiand, 
to be better informed bv Mr. Prettyjohn, but our fudden departure 
from the ifiand debarred me from it. 

Was Mr. Prettyjohn a merchant or a planter ? 

I think he was both merchant and planter, as far as I recoiled!:. 

Was Bridge Town his. ufual place of reGdence? 

I I think he was generally at Bridge Town while we were there. 

3 U 


[ 256 ] 

Did you vilit him frequently ? 

I cannot tell how often; but I dined there twice or thrice, or 

Was the fubjeCt of the population of Slaves in Barbadoes the only 
matter concerning the conduCl of fugar plantations in that Illand 
that you had an opportunity of converfing with him upon, in the 
feveral vifits you made him ? 

We had fome convention resetting ploughing the ground 

Will you ftate all that you recoiled to have palled ? 

I a Iked Mr. Prettyjohn, Whether they could not plough the 
ground ? and whether it would not anfwer better for their corn, 
than employing fo many Negroes ? Mr. Prettyjohn anfwered, that 
ploughing the ground had been tried, but it would not anfwer 
the end. 

Did you ever talk to him of the ufe of the plough in the cultiva¬ 
tion of the land for fugar ? 

I did not, as I thought it was not practicable. My reafon for 
not aiking that was, that I found the canes were put down in 

Did Mr. Prettyjohn appear to you to be a rational and ingenuous 
man, whole accounts of things you could depend upon ? 

He appeared to me to be a very ingenuous man, and a man of 
fenfe, and whole opinion would be taken as foon as any body’s. 

How long after your arrival in Barbadoes was it before you 
became acquainted with him? 

Soon after our arrival there; I think the firft time Admiral Hughes 
dined with him; it might be a week or nine days. 

Was you acquainted at all with the Reverend Do&or Warton 
(the reCtor of the parilh in which Bridge Town lays), or any other 
clergyman in Barbadoes, and who by name? 

No farther acquainted with him than dining in company with him 
and fome other clergymen (by appointment) at a public houfe; all 
the chaplains in the navy dined there once a week; I am not lure 
whether the doClor was or was not there, but one or two of the 
clergy of Barbadoes were prefent. 

Did you never vifn dodor Warton at bis own houfe ? 

I did not. 


[ 2 57 i 

Whole plantation was that where you faw a woman chained to 
a large block feeding the mill with canes ? 

I never afked, as it was no confequence to me. 

• Had you not the curiofity to inform yourfelf of the name of a 

man who could be guilty of fo much cruelty as you found that wo¬ 
man fuffering under ? 

I did not wilh to know, as it might prejudice me againft a man 
who in many other refpeds might be a valuaule man. 

In your opinion as a clergyman, ought not the perpetrator of fb 
much cruelty to be known and pubiilhed to the world ? 

If it could anfwer the end of deterring others from committing 
the fame crime, I think it Ibould. 

Did you never mention the circumftances of this poor Negro’s 
fituation to Mr. Prettyjohn, or any one elfe ? 

I never did to Mr. Prettyjohn, but I mentioned it when I went 
on board the fhip ; we were three or four of us together when that 

11 Do you know to whom the woman belonged whofe groans at¬ 

tracted your notice, and whom you found had been fo unmercifully 
punifhed as you mentioned ? 

I do not know to whom fhe belonged, though Ihe told us, but 
I do not recolleCt. 

How far might the place be, where you found her in that fitua¬ 
tion, from Bridge Town ? 

From half a mile to a mile; but I do not recoiled exadly. 

Did you ever mention the circumftances of this woman’s cafe to 
Mr. Prettyjohn, or any other inhabitant of Barbadoes? 

I do not think I ever told Mr. Prettyjohn of it; whether I told 
others of it I do not recoiled. 

You fay, K That from the view vou took of her it appeared im- 
** poffible to you for her to live without immediate medical aflift- 
“ ance;” how do you reconcile to yourfelf not to have afford¬ 
ed her that medical afiiftance, or to have given fuch informa¬ 
tion of her fituation to Mr. Prettyjohn, or fome other perfon in 
Bridge Town, who might be the means of its being adminiftered 
to her ? 

1 The only reafon that we did not do it was from the hopes 

9 that 

t 258 ] 

.that her matter would foon take care of her, and we did not chufe 
to interfere about his Slaves. 

Where is your ufual place of refidence ? 

At llchefter, in Somerfetttiire. 


Are you a beneficed clergyman ? 

1 I am not. 


Did you ever hear of any perfon or perfons in England being 
hanged, or fuffering other punittiment for the death of a fervant 
or appientice by cruel ufage of them? 

I have. 

Did you ever obferve, in the towns or roads of Somerfetttiire, or 
any other part of Great Britain, any inftance or inftances of mifera- 
ble difeafed white perfons lying about apparently negledted, with 
their fores or ulcers expofed to naked view, begging relief and cha¬ 
rity, and in fadt a nuifance to the public ? 

I have. 

Did you ever fee a Negro Slave punifhed upon a plantation in the 
Weft Indies ? 

Never, but by two or three licks of the driver. 

You have faid, “ That there can be no manner of comparifoii 
“ drawn between the fituation of the plantation Slaves in general in 

the Weft Indies, and the poor labouring people of this country j” 
from your obfervation of the ftate and condition of the latter, are 
all the poor cottagers and labouring poor in Somerfetttiire, and other 
parts of England, who are not fupported by their refpedtive pa¬ 
ddies, always provided with food, raiment, lodging, fuel, medi¬ 
cines, and the other neceflaries of life, fuflicient for themfelves and 
their families ? 

All the poor of England have a parifli to go to, which is ob¬ 
liged to maintain them upon their being rendered incapable of 
work, as far as ever I learnt. 

Qneftion repeated. 

They are fupported by medicine whenever they are fick by the 
paritti, and their own labour would always keep them from ttarv- 

* n g‘ 

What might be the ufual wages per week in the country where 


[ 259 3 

you live given to labouring men in agriculture, and other work, 
in common. 

And the queftion being objected to; 

The Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put. 
That the Witnefs be called in, and afked the faid 
queftion j 

It was refolved in the affirmative. 

Then the Witnefs being again call*d in ; 

The queftion was repeated. 

Generally fix {hillings a-week; lome not fo much in the 

From your knowledge of the price of the provifions with which 
that clafs of men fupport themfelves and their families in Somer- 
fetftiire, are you of opinion that a labouring man, with a wife and 
two or three children, unaffifted by the parifh, can fupport him- 
felf with all the neceffuries of life for himfelf and family fuited to 

their condition ? . 

He can, with the affiftance of his wife and children, fupport him¬ 
felf with the neceflaries of life. 

What time of the year was it that you faw the woman chained 
to a block'in the mill? 

Sometime in January, as far as I recollett. 

What is the crop time at Barbadoes ? 

I think they were cutting the canes when I was there, be- 
caufe I faw fome brought to the mills on the backs of the 

What time did the crop begin at ? - 

I do not know; I never enquired. 

3* Co 


fdo 5 not kn ° W h ° W l0 ” S ' he CT °P t!mc 

knOW ,hat thc CT °P *■ «. only a cer- 
I have heard it mentioned. 

y£> y ° U n °' W tha ‘ ,he “°P does not fail the whole of the 
how long tha" time Wb “do m"know?' ** *° ft ‘ ,he canes > 

in that &oation°Sin 0 g d the U m!ira < tweTv S *° C ? nt!nue !n ‘he mill 
pear to you that the woman muft L ^ e . mo, ? th » does il not ap- 

you no, corma in ,he *»<*. or 

circumftance in particular, that Ae cm ^ fdid » from this 
round to feed the mill. C ° U,d *“»* no cai *s all the year 

In what year was the hurricane at Barbadoes? 

I think it was about the year 1780. 

Was there any hurricane there m the vear irto ? 

I do not know that I heard it noticed 7 

reception of the wrn? ^ ^ h ° ,eS that Were made for the 

Small holes made with the hoe, not very deep. 

^^muclTdifferente i} 

What was the work that you faw .» 
yon mentioned being pregnam > ' h n en 2 a S ed «. whom 
She was with a hoe in her hand. 

Was ihe making holes for the corn I 
They told me the was as far a si recolleft. 

I do'nmkntwrtS fETn'T’?’ r , ea P' n S COr n in England? 

Wales. 1 have ,n E "H la ndi but I have feen them in 

\ - >M 
r vi 1 


r 261 j 

?<» found in yoThlve'mfn.SS?’'™ ^ *' Woraan 

bring whatever he could for her; whatever fte^ lld I ^ ld him “ 
Was (he a Plantation Slave ? 

knoJ. W “ ° ,,e ° f 3 *“« 0^ «ter or forty, or more, for what , 

advantageous ,0 the 

owner or overfeer of the cilate (he hfl j d her fltUation to the 
have procured food as well as n^icJ Si ,0 ’, where ^ "light 

I certainly did think fo. mCQ,cal alllfta nce ? 6 

Why did you not do it? 

other people’s bufinefs. hC “ d dld not chufe to interfere with 
tha??nf°rm"'u' J „' l r k ‘ ha ‘ ! ‘ was P°ur duty to have communicated 
f» Xe m„ ftT' 17 ’ "° r Where ‘O 

• lw "‘ -" 

Pome of them breeches, and Wrf *. 10 Cover l 1 ** nakednefe, 
cv.den, marks of whipping thev had on T •‘v"’? ™ > 1 oould fe 
,h “ ^ : th ° fc » h “ ^ Xehe™f™^^ fome on 

with the exception ofrtietlL'hlng'juft^dluded^f^ & " aked > 
The women have (hnrt P J . ai,uded to? 

UfaT ' hC &ld h3d "« hi "S "Wrc^o cover t^m than tinted 


Is *' Con,m ' ftte lo underlland, that 

your being fuddenly 

[ 262 J 

called away prevented your obtaining that accurate and cpmplete 
information refpeding the condition and treatment of the Slaves 
which you meant to do? 

Yes, certainly} 1 thould have made more enquiry, as I thought 
that thofe 1 faw who had been puniflied were guilty of worfe crimes 
than thofe they told us of. 

Did you make any remarks concerning the condition of the 
Slaves in refped to morals and religion ? 

I afked two or three that I cafually met with, whether they ever 
went to church ? and they, as far as I recoiled, faid, Noj or very 

Did you ever, when you were in Barbadoes, obferve or hear of 
any attempts being made by their matters to promote their religious 
and moral improvement ? 

I do not recoiled that I ever heard or had any convention about 

Did you ever fee any marks of attempts of this kind being 

No, I did not. i 

Did you ever converfe with any of the drivers you have feen ex- 
ercifing the whip ? 

I remember aflting one of them that I faw, how he could have the 
heart to ftrike a perfon fo hard as he did ? he faid, if he did not beat 
him he would not work, or fomething to that purpofe. 

What were the particular objections which you underftood were 
made to the ufe of the plough in cultivating the ground for corn in 

I do not recoiled that there was ever any reafon given for it in 
the converfation that patted between Mr. Prettyjohn and me, but I 
thought rnyfelf that there was not grafs enough on the ifland to 
maintain the cattle, as thofe that I faw were very poor in general. 

What is the nature of the foil in Barbadoes, as far as you faw ? 
I really do not recoiled—I cannot be certain. 

Have you ever known the plough ufed in a foil wherein there 
was abundance of large /tones, and where the furface has been ex¬ 
tremely uneven ? 

l Many 




[ 26 3 ] 

Many times, at a number of places in Dorfetfhire, where 
there are flints, and in Wales, where there are a number of flones 
out of fight under ground, and the plough can icarce go its length 
without meeting with a ftone ; 1 mean in the whole of the parifhes 
of Stapleton, Winterborn, Long Brady, and the neighbourhood 
in Dorfetfhire, and in Newport in Pembrokefhire. 

Did you ever fee labourers in any part of Great Britain or Wales 
working in the fields under the whip of a driver ? 

No; bat I have feen labourers beat in the field for not working. 

Did you, when you were in Barbadoes, obferve whether attempts 
were made to produce regular marriages among the Slaves, and to 
give them ideas of domeftic happinefs ? 

There might, or might not; 1 cannot undertake to fay. 

By the iinpreflion that was made on your mind from what you 
faw in Barbadoes, did you think, that if you had made any com¬ 
plaints of the ill treatment of the Slaves whom you faw fuffering 
in the way you have mentioned, thefe complaints would have been 
favourably received, and you yourfelf lived afterwards on as com¬ 
fortable terms in the ifland as before P 

I do not know as to that; but I think a great deal of the pa- 
nifhments were inflidted on the Negroes by the drivers, unknown 
to their maflers. 

Why then did you not make known to the maflers this mifcon- 
dudt of their drivers, the knowledge of which might have enabled 
them to provide againft it in future? 

As I faid before, I did not chufe to interfere, as they knew their 
bufinefs better than I could diredt them. 

You fay, “ That you thought there was not grafs enough in 
the ifland of Barbadoes to feed their cattleis grafi the only green 
provender they have for cattle ? 

1 ihink they give the tops of the canes to cattle as well as grafs. 

Did you never underftand that they have potatoe vines, and In¬ 
dian and Guinea corn with which cattle are fed ? 

I do not know, really; but we ufed to give Guinea corn leaves to 
the cattle on board, brought for fodder or food; I cannot tell 

s r 


[ 264 ] 

Daring the fix weeks you were at Barbadoes, how many times 
were you on fbore ? 

I fuppofe a (core. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mercurii , 26° die Mali 1790. 

Mr. THOMAS WOOLRICH called in; and examined. 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies? 


When, in what fituation, on what ifland or iflands, and for 
how long a time ? 

From the year 1753 to the year 1773 ; but in the intermedi.ite 
time I took two or three trips to England, and two to North 
America ; I was in mercantile bufinefs chiefly; in the ifland of 
Tortola: I was alfo occafionally at the Windward Iflands of 
Barbadoes, Antigua, and St. Chriltopher’s. 

What was the impreflion excited in your mind refpedting the 
Slaves fituation in general on your firft coming to Tortola ? 

At my firft arrival in that ifland I faw many inftances of great 
feverity ufed upon the Negro Slaves; yet the fituation in general 
was more tolerable than it became afterwards. 

In what particulars do you mean that it was more tolerable at 
the period of your firft arrival than it became afterwards ? 

The number of Slaves at that time in Tortola was not near fo 
great as they became afterwards; they were allowed lufficiency of 
ground to plant provifions upon for their own ufe, which (ome 
years afterwards was more abridged, and which had a tendency 
to a fcarcity, and want of food for their fupport. 

To what purpofes were thefe lands diverted, which had been 
originally cultivated for provifions ? 

As the ifland became more and more cleared, divers of thefe \ 

lands were converted by the owners into cane land ; and the num¬ 

[ *6 5 ] 

her cf Negroes in a courfe of years being greater, the Negro 
ground became more divided, or given them in fmaller lots. 

In the t article of punifhment, was there any difference between 

the former and the latter period ? 

As the quantity of Negroes increafed on the ifland, the pumui- 
ment of the Slaves in general, in my opinion (and I am certain 
of it), became more and more fevere. 

During your flay at Tortola, as you were in the mercantile line 
yourfelf, had you much opportunity of feeing the treatment and 

fituation of Field Slaves? _ # 

I had multitudes of opportunities of feeing the Field Slaves at 
their work, or other ways; I lived in a planter’s houfe (he was 
reckoned one of the principal planters in the ifland) for the fpace 
of fix or feven years, and had the opportunity of feeing the 
Slaves, as well as the plantations of many others in the 

When, as you have mentioned above, the Slaves proyifion 
ground was leffcned in Tortola, was or was not the deficiency 

made good by imported food? 

The food imported from abroad was very feldom imported at 
that time ; there was no certainty or dependence on the importa¬ 
tion of foreign food. 

About the time of your firft going to the ifland of Tortola, 
were the flocks of Negroes kept up pretty well by the b rths with¬ 
out importations from Africa ? 

1 have heard the planters comparing the number of N.groes at 
prior dates, fome years before, with the then prefent number, and 
they have alfo fignified their increafe by the births withoi t any 
importation, and there was reckoned a general increafe upon the 
whole through the illand. 

Had you a competent knowledge of the circumflances of the 
planters then in the ifland to enable you to fay whether they were 

in general thriving or otherwife ? 

1 know at that time that the planters were altogether in good 
credit with the merchants; there were none known to be invol¬ 
ved in debts, either to the merchants in the ifland or to the mer¬ 
chants in England, and I have realon to believe there was not any 
one planter indebted in England. 

[ 265 ] 

Were you in a fituation to form a competent judgment of it? 

My fituation was this; I was a merchant that kept a ftore there, 
and had many opportunities from that caufe to know their fitua- 

In what refpe&s did your fituation as a merchant enable you to 
form a judgment of the circumltances of the planters? 

By dealing with them, and giving them confiderable credits; 
their payments were very pundlual, and they were able to fulfil 
their engagements. 

Were you able in any degree to know the produce of each eftate, 
and its general expences ? 

I had a great opportunity of knowing the quantity of produce 
made upon moft of the eftates; the matter of their expences I am 
not fo well acquainted with, but they were moderate at that time; 
they were very feldom under the neceflity of purchaling provifions 
for their Slaves. 

Were the planters in general refident at that time upon their own 
plantations ? 

I think they were wholly fo in that ifland. 

What were then the chief articles of produce ? 

The chief articles were fugar, cotton, and rum, as a confequence 
of the fugar; but the cotton planting diminifhing as the planting 
of fugar increafed, there was not near fo much cotton made in the 
latter part of my time there. 

Was this change of fyftem of which you have fpoken attended 
with profit to the planters themfelves in general ? 

The planting of fugars is more laborious to the Slaves, and in 
fome in fiances proved more profitable to the owners, but in 
general it proved otherwife. 

Can you particularize the circumftances wherein this change 
-of fyftem proved unprofitable ? 

About three or four years after my arrival there, fome Guinea 
fhips came down with cargoes of Slaves, and the planters in a 
general way bought: this induced many of the planters to turn 
out their cotton and plant canes, which is more laborious work 
than that of the cotton plantations; many of their new Negroes 
often die in what they call the feafoning, and as Guinea fhips 
•came down time after time, the planters bought to fill up the 
6 • numbers 

C =67 ] 

numbers that died; and this way continuing for a courfe of 
years, many of the planters got much involved in debts by pur- 
chafing Slaves upon credit; which induced many to apply to the 
merchants in England for loans, and they became neceffitated to 
mortgage their eftates and Slaves to them; I have never known a 
planter, who has thus mortgaged his eftate, to clear or pay off the 
debt; fome planters have been under the necefiity of having their 
eftates fold by public auction in confequence of thefe mortgages, 
when they have been fold much under value, and the Englilh 
merchant has fuffered in his debt; I have known fome of thefe 
eftates fold, where the owners have become overfeers upon the 
fame eftates. 

During the latter part of your ftay in Tortola, had the Slaves 
provifion grounds for their fubfiftence ? 

Many of the fitld Negroes had fome fmall lots of land to plant 
provifion upon, where it could be afforded; but I fuppofe it was 
not get en.1; fome planters allowed them Saturdays in the after¬ 
noon, excepting in crop time, to cultivate and plant provifions for 
their own ufe; many of them alfo worked on the Sundays that 
had land; they were obliged to do it by the direction of the 
owner or overfeer. 

In the latter period of your ftay in Tortola, did the Ne¬ 
groes increafe from the births ? 

That is very difficult for me to judge of; but they did not increafe 
in that period in proportion to what they did at my firft coming 
there, when the number of Slaves was fewer, and their ufage more 

Were droughts not uncommon in the illand of Tortola ? 

Droughts are common in all thofe iflands; but at fometimes 
there has been very great and long ones. 

Did the Slaves fuffer materially in confequence of them ? 

Thefe droughts are a caufe of a great fearcity of provifions, 
whereby the Negroes fuffer greatly for want of food; I have 
known it near unto a famine, and Slaves have pined away and died 
for want of fuftenance or food, when it could not any way be 

Do you think that the Slaves were at other times fufficiently 
fed ? 

I never faw a gang of Negroes that appeared to me any thing 

3 Z J Ue 

[ 268 ] 

like fufficiently fed; their appearance to the eye fully proves their 
want and hardships; a light of a few gangs of the field Negroes 
wou.d convince a man more fully than I can defcribe it by any 
number of words. 

Do Slaves frequently run away from their matters ? 

Some or other frequently run away from their matters. 

To what caufes are fuch runnings away to be attributed in 
general ? 

It is to be attributed to hard or fevere ufage received from 
the matter or overfeer for trivial faults, which they judge did 
not deferve any fuch correction. 

In fpeaking of the emaciated appearance of the Slaves, do you 
confine yourfelf to the ifland of Tortola only, or do you fpeak 
of fuch field Negroes as you have feen in the other iflands ? 

I do not confine myfelf in this rel'peCt at all to the Ifland of 
Tortola, but {peak as to every other ifland that I have been in ; 
I have feen this in Antigua to a greater extent than ever I did 
in Tortola. 

How were the field Negroes in general cloathed, during the 
whole of your ftay at Tortola ? 

The cloathing of the field Negroes is very trifling; the men 
have generally a pair of trowfers, the women a petticoat made of 
Coarfe ofnaburghs; thole are given to them once a year in ge¬ 
neral by their owners; fome do not give them io much; the 
field Negroes in general, I apprehend, do not coll their matters 
half a crown per head per annum in cloathing. 

Defcribe to the Committee the houfes of the field Negroes, 
and their beds and bedding ? 

Their houfes are fmall Iquare huts, built with poles and 
thatched at the top and the fides with a kind of bamboo, which 
the Negroes build for thenifelves; the field Negroes lie upon the 
ground in the middle of their huts, with a fmall fire generally 
before them; they have no bedding; but fome of them obtain a 
board, or a mat, to lie upon before the fire; fome few of rhe 
head Negroes have cabins raifed from the floor, made of boards, 
but no bedding, except fome of them, who have a coarfe 



[ 269 ] 

What are the ufual punifhments of plantation Slaves ? 

That mud be according to the nature of their crimes \ if a 
runaway Negro is taken and brought home, his punifhment is 
exceeding fevere; in that cafe the ufual way is for four able 
Negroes to take hold of each arm and leg, and lay him down upon 
the ground, when the chief whipper lays upon their bare back 
the number of lafhes that are ordered by the owner or the over- 
feer; it may be forty, fifty, fixty, or mere, juft at their pleafure j 
I have feen Negroes thus whipped, when the firft ftroke has cut 
them it) the flefli fo as to make the blood fpout out immedi¬ 
ately} there are fbme other ways of correction very barbarous, 
fuch as fetting a Negro upon a picket; that is, ftanding on 
one foot upon a (harp ftick; as alfo, what are called thumb- 
fcrtWs, which give an intolerable pain. 

Is it ufual to fee marks of whippings on the perfons of the Slaves ? 

That is very common, and fome appeared to have been whipped 
to a defperate degree; their backs appearing in an undiftinguifhed 
mafs of lumps, holes, and furrows, by frequent whippings. 

Are the bodies of the generality of field Slaves marked by the 
whip ? 

There are a great deal more marked by the whip than are 
free of it. 

, • ' ■' r 

Do the field Slaves work under the whip of a driver ? 

Always that ever I have feen; the drivers carry a whip for the 
correction of the Negroes j and they were continually under the 
dread of correction. 

Defcribe the nature of this inftrument ? 

The drivers whips are generally made of plaited coW-fkin, and- 
the lathes are thick and ftrong. 

Is it a formidable inftrument? 

I have feen them fuch in one of the overfeers hands, who 
would take the fkin off a horfe’s back with one of them: I have 
heard them boaft that they can Jay the marks into a deal board, 
which I have feen them try, and they have done it. 

Were the perfons of Slaves, in your time at Tortola, fufficiently 
protected from ill ufage, either on the part of their mafters, or of 
any other perfons ? 

4 Ido 

[ 2/0 ] 

I do not know of any protection they had from the feverity 
or ill ufage of their matters. A neighbouring planter, that I was 
wdl acquainted with, had one of his Negroes run away from 
him ; he gave his overfeer orders to take him if he could, dead 
or alive. A little while after that, the overfeer, finding the 
Negro in one of his matter's Negro huts faft afleep in the day¬ 
time, flint the Negro through the body; the Negro jumping up 
faid, “ What you kill me afleep,” and fell down dead immedi¬ 
ately; the overieer took off his head, and carried it immediately 
to his owner. 1 knew another fimilar inftance to that in the 
fan e ifland—A planter taking fome offence at his waiting-man 
who was a Mulatto, ftepped fuddenly to his gun in his houfe* 
which his waiting-man perceiving, ran haftily from his mailer* 
but he kveiling at him, (hot him through the head with a fingle 
ball. I will mention one other inftance—A manager of an eftate 
in Tortola, whof c owner did not refide upon the ifland, fitting 
at dinner, in a fudden refentment to his cook, went direftly to 
his fword, and run the Negro woman through the body, and ihe 
died upon the floor immediately ; and the Negroes were called 
in to take her away and bury her. 

How did theie fads come to your knowledge ? 

All the White people in the ifland were acquainted with the 
circumftances, and I have repeated them, as I have been informed, 
—they were notorious faffs, and none doubted of the truth of 
them—they happened when 1 was upon the ifland. 

In any of thefe inftances, were the offending parties punilhed, 
or called to any account ? r * 

They were never any of them called in quellion on that 

Were they fhunned, and confidered as in a ftate of difgrace ? 

Not at all ; they went to all public places as ufual before this 

Did you ever fee Slaves working in the fields in chains ? 

I have feen it feveral times; but the moft ftriking inftance of 
it was in Antigua, where I have feen a confiderable gang work¬ 
ing in the field locked in one chain; I have feen another gang 
or two carrying down fugars from the mountainous parts of that 
ifland upon their heads in tubs, bafkets, or bags, heavy laden; 


they had no cloathing upon their bodies but what was fufficient 
to cover their nakednefs j the appearance they made in that ftate 
was very {hocking to behold j the appearance of their bodies 
{hewed the great want of food, and other inftances of fevere 
ufige. Some gentlemen, feeing thefe Negroes in this plight, I 
heard them afle one another, “ Whofe Slaves are thefe ?” and 
“ whofe are yonder others in a like fituation ?” One of the gentle¬ 
men anlwered, “ Lord blefs us.” Thefe queftions were afked, to 
fliew fome refentment at the feverity they were treated with, as 
I apprehended; but l'uch treatment is too common. 

What were the ordinary hours of labour and reft of the Field 
Negroes ? 

It is cuftomary to turn the Field Negroes out to their work as 
foon as the light well appears, in all the Iflands where I have 
been, as far as I have feen; they are not difcharged from their 
drivers, or overfeers, until the clofe of evening or dark. Their 
ulual times of reft I cannot particularly {peak to; they have time 
to eat their food in the morning, and alfo at noon; any other 
particulars of reft I am not particular in. 

After their day’s labour in the field, is there any other work to 
be performed ? 

When the Field Negroes are difcharged from that labour, they 
have generally grafs to pull for the ufe of their mafters horfes 
and cattle j by the time that they have done that buftnefs it is * 

Is this picking of grafs a hardfhip on the Slaves ? 

If it be reckoned as part ot their day labour, it lengthens the 
day; if it be reckoned as an addition to their day’s work, it is a 
great hardfhip, othervvife in general it is no harder work than 
the field labour, when the grafs is plenty; but in droughts it is 
fcarce, ^and hard to be got j and if the Negroes fail in their quan¬ 
tities, they are often punifhed by the overfeer with the whip. 

Did grafs picking form in general a part of the day’s field la¬ 
bour. or was it added to it ? 

The Negroes were compelled to do that bufinefs as duly and 
certainly as any other part of their day’s labour. • 

Were they excufed any par* of their field labour in con- 
fideration of this talk of grafs picking ? 

It was not cuftomary in Tortola for the Negroes to work 

^ A by 


[ 272 ] 

by limitation, but only according to the length of the days,, 
as is before mentioned. 

How were the pregnant women in general treated (fpeaking 
of Field Slaves); did they work in the field gangs till near 
the time of their being brought to bed ? 

The pregnant women, I think, had fome little indulgences; 
but it is cufiomary for them to woik in the field until they 
are near their time. 

Was the whip ever applied to them to urge them forward in 
cafe they <Vere backward in working? 

The whip was occafionally ufed upon them, but not in fo 
fevere a manner as the men Slaves, that I ever obferved. 

What, in your time, was undcrftood by the term, “ feafoning 
“ of Negroes,”' that you have mentioned ? 

I never underftcod that it was any difeafe or diftemper, yet 
it is a very common word among the planters and others, 
and it is what they fay the Negroes that are newly-imported 
from Africa, many of them die oft. 

What then was meant by the term ? 

1 always underftood, that the new Negroes deaths are occa* 
fioned by the hidden hardfhips that are brought upon them by 
being put to hard labour foon afier they are landed out of the 
lhips, and from the fcarcity of food, and the want of almoft every 
other neceflary; this, I apprehend, is the caufe of many of the 
new imported Negroes dying before the end of the firft year. 

Were tliefe caufes, cr this feafoning, as it is termed, extremely 
fatal to Slaves in any inftances that fell within your notice ? 

1 have known many inftances of that.—Some planters have 
bought lots of new Negroes, who have told me that thev have 
loft one-third of the number, or more, in the firft year of the fea- 
lbn ng. 

Did a cargo of Slaves ufually contain fome who, from fick- 
nels, were fold at a price below the general average ? 

1 never faw a cargo of Slaves but what had fick or refufe Ne¬ 
groes, more or lefs, which were fold at an inferior price, probably 
to the cotton planters. 

Why were they fold to the cotton planters ? 


[ 273 ] 

The planting of cotton is an eafier bufinefs than that of the 
&gar cane, therefore the weakeft Negroes are the raolt likely to 
<- be put to that bufinefs* 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Jovi's, 27 ° die Mali 1790. 

^'Ir. THOMAS WOOL RICH called in^ and further 


What other defcriptions of Negro Slaves are there attached to 
plantations befides field Slaves ? 

There are houfe carpenters, coopers, and mafons; thofe are the 
principal of the mechanic trades. 

What, in general, is their treatment compared with that of the 
field Slaves ? 

The treatment of thofe, generally, is better than that of field 
Slaves by realon that they have a more certain allowance of pro- 

^ hat, in general, is the fituation of dbmeftic Slaves, compared 
with that of field Slaves ? 

The female domeftic Slaves, many of them, are in a pretty good 
.fituation ) their labour is more moderate, they are better provided 
for in food and, hut there are various capacities amongft 
them where it is a large eftate. 

Do the Slaves ever commit fuicide ? 

. I think I know but few inftances of that amongft the Creole 
Slaves; I have heard of a good many amongft the. African Slaves 
hanging themielves in the woods. * 

Do you know of any particular inftances ? 

1 recoiled! one very particular j—a planter purchafed fix men 
.Slaves out of a Guinea fhip, and put them upon a fmall ifland 
called a Key, for the purpofe of planting cotton ; they had a 
Vvhite man wiih them as eve. leer, who left them of a Saturday 
night (there were no White inhabitants on that ifhnd)—on the 


[ 2 74 ] 

Monday following the overfeer returned to the ifland to put them 
to their work again, when he found them, all fix, hanging near 
together in the woods; this is one of the principal circumilances 
that I recoiled! at this time. 

Did you ever enquire into the reafon of the Slaves committing 

fuicide ? . 

When I have heard of thefe inftances I have often enquired ot 
fome of the mod fenfible Negroes what could be the caule of their 
thus taking away their own lives; the anfwer they have given me 
wa% “ That they would rather lole their lives than live in the fitua- 
“ tion they were in.” 

How much do you think a field Slave and a tradefman’s Slave 
could be expected to earn for themfelves in the conrie of the year, 
in the Illand of Tortola ? 

I am not uble to give any particular anfwer to that queltion. 
There are many field Negroes that have it not in their power to earn 
any thing for themfelves, exclufive of their matter s work ; there 
are fome few field Negroes that raife fowls at times, and there 
are fome few raiie pigs and fell them, but their number is very 
few ; the Black tradei'men in Tortola ha-.e very feldom any jobs 10 
do on a Sunday, which is the only day allowed for them- 

What ooinion did you form of the intellects or capacity of the 

Negroes ? . , . 

Their intellefts are of various qualities, as among other people; 
fome of them, that are brought up amongft the White people, I 
have known of as good abilities as are common amongft mankind, 
ci nlid^ing their fituation and want of education. 

Are they ever ingenious artificers ? 

I obferved that the young Negroes learn the trades and occupa¬ 
tions as readily as the White people, and many of them are inge¬ 
nious workmen, fuch as carpenters, coopers, mafons, and black- 

Do they feem to poffefs the focial attentions in as ftrong a degree 

as the natives of other countries ? . 

1 know of no exceptions to the contrary, more particularly 
among the Creole Negroes ; their natural attention for their chil¬ 
dren and relatives, I apprehend, is as great as amongft any other 
people, 9 


[ *75 ] 

Did they appear to you fufceptible of religious impre(lions ? 

There was no profellion of any kind of religion amongd the Ne¬ 
groes in Tortola. 

Did the Negroes, particularly the African Negroes, appear to 
have any idea of a Supreme Being ? 

The Creoles have a certain belief in a Supreme Being ; the Afri¬ 
cans, when they fird come over, cannot fpeak any language but 
their own ; but I never knew one of them that could exp refs him- 
felf, but always allowed of a Supreme Being; I have often feen the 
Slaves, when they have been brought to the ted or trial before 
their maders for any charge of mifdemeanors one againd another, 
if their word is difputed or doubted of by their matter, they wril 
frequently lift up their hands, and fay, “ God above knows vvhat 
“ they allert is true.” 

How long was it after the arrival of African Negroes, that they 
were commonly put to field work, in your time, in the iiland of 
Tortola ? 

They are generally kept a few days before they are put to the 
field; I never knew any that remained a week from being put to 
work after they were purchafed. 

Were Negroes ever branded in your time ? 

There was but one planter or two that ever I knew to brand 
their Negroes; and that was done with the initial letters of 
their name with a hot indrument; but I never faw the opera¬ 

Were there any fpecies of ground provifions which were not 
materially affedted by the droughts of which you have before 
fpoken ? 

The droughts generally affedt all kinds of vegetation, and that 
is a great hurt to the provifions; there may be fome kinds that 
dand the drought better than others, particularly yams, which it 
is faid dand the drought the bed; I cannot be particular about the 
other kinds of provifions. 

What is your opinion of the fituation of field Slaves in point 
of comfort, compared with that of the lower orders of people in 
this country ? 

The lowed orders of people in this country can by no means 
be compared with the general condition of Slaves; their general 
fituation is very lamentable (I would not wifli to ufe any word to 

4 B txiggerate). 

[ 2 7 6 ] 

exaggerate), but it cannot be deferibed to the full to the under- 
ftanding of thofe who have never feen it. 

Did any one, or at lead did the generality, in your time, treat 
their Slaves as well as a good mafter treats his fervants in this 
country ? 

By no means; I never knew any planter or owner of a gang of 
Negroes that ufed them as well as either a good mafter or a bad 
one ufes his fervants in England. 

To what do you aferibe this general want of good treatment ? 

The labour of the Slaves is known to be hard -, they are not pro¬ 
vided with the neceffaries of life; they neither receive wages or 
cloathing, and that is fufficient to make their ftate and condition 
much harder than the loweft degree of fervants in England. 

Is it not for the mafter’s intereft that the Slaves fliould be well 
treated, and if fo, why are they not fo ? 

It is certainly the mafter’s intereft to treat his Slaves well; the 
contrary ufage never fails to bring their owners into conliderable 
Ioffes and embarrafling circumftances; I believe it is for want 
of wifdom that they are treated ill. 

What, from your obfervations, was the general effedt produced 
on the minds of thofe who had the command of Slaves ? 

I apprehend the mafters or owners of Slaves became morofe 
and cruel by being pradfifed and uled to that kind of bufinefs j 
I believe it has a great effedt upon the morals of the White people, 
and greatly to their hurt. 

You ftated fome time ago, ** That from the time at which the 
“ planters of Tortola began to make conliderable purchafes of 
** Negroes, they declined in their affairsdo you know, without 
fpecifying particular inftances, what in general has been fince the 
ftate of their affairs ? 

Since I left that Ifland I have been advifed of the ftate of it 
from year to year by my correfpondents; I have alfo feen fome 
perfon from that Ifland generally every year, who has given me 
the ftate of the planters to this prefent year; their fituation upon 
the laft information I had from thence was, that they were in 
very diftreffed circumftances; divers of their eftates that were 
mortgaged in England to the merchants have been fold at public 
vendue,- upon very low terms, by reafon that there were few able 
to buy and pay for them; the general credit is fo low with the 


[ 277 ] 

planters, that there are few that can obtain the neceflaries they 
want from the (lores that are kept there, by reafon of the debts 
to Englifh merchants. 

To what caufes do you chiefly afcribe this unprofperous ftate 
of affairs ? 

It has been my opinion for many years, that the unneceffary 
purchafing of African Slaves has been the main caufe of their 
embarraffments, and the accumulation of their debts ; many new 
Negroes dying foon after imported, and ftill they are induced to 
buy again from time to time upon credit, by which their debts 
have been increafed with the Englifh merchants. 

Did you ever make any enquiry amongft: any African Slaves 
how they had been brought into that fituation ? 

I have afked many of them at different times that queftion ; I 
had a waiting boy among that number, who told me, he and his 
After were catched in the field together, where they weie put to 
tend fome corn j they were both carried away, and never faw their 
parents any more. Men Slaves have told me, they have been 
Unprized in the night by a number of the enemy, who have taken 
them prifoners in their own houfes, or in the village where they 
have relxded j fome have told me, that they have been taken pri¬ 
foners of war. 

Have you obferved the fituation of the Slaves, as to food and 
other particulars, to vary accordingly as the owners affairs have 
been profperous or embarrafled ? 

Amongft different planters there are different ufages to their 
Slaves; fome feed them better and take more care of them than 
others do; I fully believe that the circumftances of their owners 
have a great effeft in that cafe ; thofe planters who are con- 
fiderably in debt, their Slaves are generally under more fevere 
ufage, worfe fed, and more feverity is ufed upon them than the 
Slaves of thofe who are in eafy circumftances. 

What was the planter’s name with whom you refided fix or 
feven years ? 

John Pickering. 

Did you refide with him that fpace of time upon his planta¬ 
tion, or at his houfe in town ? 

His houfe was upon his plantation; he had no houfe in town. 



[ S78 ] 

Do you mean to fay, that you refided conftantly with him dur¬ 
ing that period at bed and board, or were your vifits only occa- 
fionally there ? 

I lodged that fpace of time under his own roof; I never was 
fo long as fix or feven years altogether at one time in Tortola; 
but I was more than that fpace of time at two different periods. 

Where did you keep your fiiop ? 

The ftore that I kept then was about fifty yards from his dwel¬ 
ling houfe, and was his own property. 

How far was that from the town in Tortola ? 

It was fix miles. 

Was it ufual for the merchants in Tortola to keep their fhops 
fo far in the country ? 

It was at that time that I firft went to the Ifland; I after¬ 
wards went to fettle at the Road Town, and built a ftore for my 
own ufe. This firft ftore that I lived at was near the fea, and a 
harbour, where two veffels generally were loaded at. Since that 
time the ftores have all centered in the Road Town, where the 
fhipping lies. 

Are there more towns than one in Tortola ? 

None but one. 

How many houfes were at that town, do you think, when you 
firft went to live at Tortola? 

The houfes at that time were very few; the Liverpool ftores 
were principally at that time in the Road } the planters lived al¬ 
together, or nearly altogether, on their own eftates. 

How many eftablifhed merchants had their conftant refidence 
at the Road Town at that time ? 

At that time it was cuftomary to hold the ftores about fix months 
in the year at the crop time, for the felling of their goods and 
loading the fhips; and the merchants frequently returned to 
Liverpool in the fhips they brought their cargoes in, and fhut up 
their ftores the remainder part of the year. 

Then is the Committee to underftand, that there were at that 
time no other ftorekeepers in the Road Town than thofe that 
came out from Liverpool, and returned back in the fhips ? 

There were two or three that conftantly refided in the Road 



[ 2 79 ] 

Do you recnlle£i how many other merchants there were in the 
Ifland of lortola, at your firit going there, that kept their ftores 
in the country as you did ? 

There was one kept at the weft end of the Ifland, and feveral 
other fma’l ones; but the number I do not exadtly know. 

At that time was there any confiderable trade* between North 
America and Tortola ? 

. There was but little trade between that Ifland and North Ame¬ 
rica at that time, and that was moftly in lumber. 

How many London (hips ufed to trade to that Ifland when you 
hrit went there ? 3 

None at all. 

What year did you remove, and fettle yourfelf as a merchant 
at the Road Town ? 

It was in 1764 or 1765. 

Tfl H ? W f l ?' any koglheads of fugar, per annum, do you think the 
llland or 1 ortola made when you firft went there ? 

There were few fugar-works at that time; I do not fuppofe 
there were above ten or a dozen that I recoiled!. 

Tn W ) ha rt y °? a PP rehend ma y be the length and breadth of the 
Ifland of Tortola ? 

It is generally reckoned to be about twenty miles Iona- i t j s 
narrow in proportion; we had no draughts or meafurementr’ 

you^uitt^h ? LOnd ° n fll ' PS WCre thCre tFaded t0 the Ifland when 

To the beft of my recolledtion there were three, fome years 
but two, fometimes there were three. 

T/l ^ y0i u reco,lt< ^ bow many fugar eftates there were in that 
Ifland at the time you left it ? 

I never took any account, or ever heard the number of them • 
there might be fixty, or more. 9 

Could the lands in Tortola that were ufed to be planted in 

sir Ataf Uivi,ed for fug,r ' ' vi,hoot ,he im p° i,ati ° n 

In fo Ihort a time it could not have been done. 

4 C 


[ 28 o ] 

Do not fugar eftates, as the labour upon them is more conftant 
and fevere than upon cotton plantations, require a larger number 
cf Negroes accordingly ? 

I never was any planter, neither can I be particular in the anfwer 
to that queftioti ; the planting of fugar I apprehend would re¬ 
quire a larger body of Negroes than the cotton planters generally 
are mafter of. • 

Is there the fame neceffity for an equal number of Negroes to 
cultivate a cotton plantation of ioo acres of land as to cultivate 
a fugar plantation of the fame extent ? 

I cannot refolve that queftion; the planting of fugar and cotton 
are very different labour, as cotton plantations appear much lighter 
work, which the women and children can perform, that would 
not be fit to work in the fugar works. 

"Wherein confifts that difference in the labour upon the two 
plantations ? 

I have mentioned before that the planting of cotton is light 
work, in comparifon to that of planting and making of fugar. 

Is there then a neceffity to have as great a number of efficient 
and able Negroes upon a cotton plantation as upon a fugar eftate 
of equal extent ? 

There never has been any cotton planted in thofe parts of the 
Ifland where the fugar cane is planted j as to comparing the planting 
of cotton and lugar by acres or equal quantities of land, I am not 
•a judge of the difference of the labour; the cotton is all planted 
upon the pooreft parts of the Ifland, upon rocky and fteep places, 
moll of it where canes are not planted; I cannot be more par¬ 
ticular ; there are no regular plantations of cotton but upon the 
keys and rocky hills. 

As you fay then, that when you firft went to Tortola there 
were not above locr 12 fugar eftates upon that Ifland, for what 
other purpofe was the land cultivated, the cotton, as you fay, not 
growing in regular plantations, and only upon the barren and 
poor fpots you have mentioned ? 

A great part of that Ifland, more than one-half I think, was 
in its native wood*;; but the beft part of the land was in the 
hands of different proprietors, who- cleared out fmall parts of it 
from year to year, whereby they enlarged their fugar plantations, 
and made new ones alfo. 



[ *8r ] 

During the whole, or any part of the time, of your refidence 
at Tortola (from your firft going there to your finally leaving it) 
was there any regular courts of juftice and form of government 
eftablifhed there, fimilar to that which prevailed in the other 
Weft India Iflands that you fay you vifited ? 

During the whole time of my refidence there, there was a 
court of juftice held the firft Monday in three or four months of 
the year. 

Who were the judges of that court ? 

The court was held by fix magiftrates and the governor of the 

Was there any afflmbly at that time in the Ifland ? 

There was not. 

Was the Ifland of Tortola then, during that period, under the 
feme fettled adminiftration of juftice that prevailed in the other 
Iflands above mentioned ? 


Under thefe circumftances of incomplete cultivation, and want 
of the fame mode of adminiftering juftice,. was it to be expeded 
that the fame good order and government could prevail in that 
Ifland that did in the others ? 

Juftice was adminiftered in the Ifland, during the whole time 
of my refidence there, in as good and regular order as I judge it 
was in any of the other Iflands. 

Were there a great part of the lands in Tortola, that were in 
woods when you firft went there, cleared and converted into fu^ar 
eftates ? ° 

Some part of the wood-lands were cleared out every year,, which 
enlarged the plantations. 

In what period of years do you then believe that thofe lands 
could have been cleared, and the fugar eftates in that Ifland in- 
creafed, from io or 12, to 50 or 60, by the ftock of Negroes 
which the proprietors then had, and without any addition of 
Slaves from Africa? 

It could not have been cleared in fo Ihort a time if there had 
been no importation of African Slaves; but I never made any 
computation or eftimation of what length of time the Negroes 
that then were upon the Ifland would have made the like clear¬ 


[ *8z ] 

Were not the proprietors then juftified in the purchafes they 
made of African Slaves for that purpofe, notwithflanding the (ub- 

fequent misfortunes that attended them ? 

I am very certain the event has been greatly to the lofs and em- 

barrafTment of the planters, which I judge to be in a great mealure 

owing to the bad management and hard ufage of the Slaves; and 
that feven-eighths of the planters would have been in much better 

circumttances, if they had not bought any Negroes during the 

time of my refidence there, but had ufed thofe that they then had 
with humanity and care, and given them proper neceff.ries, in re- 
fpedt to food and cloathing, and their labour had been in proper 


And then the Witnefs was diredted to withdraw. 

Verier isi 28° die Maii 1790. 

W OOLRICH called in j and further 

How were the White inhabitants and Negroes in Tortola fup- 
plied with frefh water for drinking, and other ufes ? 

Jn the time of great droughts, water is generally very fcarcej 
divers of the gentlemen planters have large citterns to preferve the 
rain water in ; the wells that the Negroes get the water from, 
many of them are brackifh and hard, that few White people can 

Are there are any natural fprings of frefh water in that ifland ? 

The greatett well that is in Tortola is in the Road Town, 
within 100 yards of the fea; at fome times in the year it produces 
plenty of water, but fomething brackifh; in great droughts the 
well is frequently drawn dry.—I am not certain whether it can 

be deemed a fpring or only a foakage. 

Are not the other wells in the ifland of which you fpeak fre¬ 
quently dry alio ? 

1 think there are no wells but what are at times, or frequently, 



[ 2 % ] 

In a fcarcity of that article of life, do not the Whites fuffer from 
that fcarcity as well as the Slaves ? 

I think that it is very feldom that the Whites fuffer much ; the 
loweft decree of the people generally preferve rain water in one 
kind of calk or another for the ufe of drinking. 

Have yon never known the cifterns and calks, which you 
fay the Whites make ule cf for preferving rain water, to be 
emptied oi their ftores from a continuance of drought? 

I remember, in one very great drought, that the rain waters 
generally appeared to be exhaufted, and the people were in feme 
degree of neceffity obliged to ufe well water, which fome 
filtered through filtering Hones. 

Did you ever know or hear of rain-water to be fo fcarce in 
Tortola and Antigua as to be fold ? 

I never knew rain-water to be fold in Tortola ; I was once at 
Saint Johns in Antigua at a time of drought, when thofe people 
who had not cilterns fufficient for their own fupply bought 
water at a certain price per pail; the common water of the ponds 
was wholly dried up, and I was informed that many cattle died 
there for want of water. 

In great droughts do not the White inhabitants of Tortola alfo 
fuffer as well as the Slaves from the failure of the fruits of the 
earth ? 

I very well remember a time when the provifions for the White 
people were as l'carce as what they were for rain-water, and they 
were m confiderable difficulties for want of fupplies of food. 

When the wells are dry, and the water which the Slaves are 
obliged to drink in times of drought is brackiffi, may not the 
fcarcity, or the nature of that water, have been the occafion of 
the death of many Slaves ? 

The Negroes are wholly accuftomed in that Illand to drink a 
water that is brackiffi; they will not drink rain-water if they 
have their choice, fo that I do not know it has any particu ar effedt 
upon them; but thofe who are not uled to drink of that water 
it would very likely have an ill effedl upon. * 

What may the effedl: of a fcarcity of brackiffi water be upon 
thofe Slaves that prefer that brackiffi water, if they have not a 
fufficient quantity of it ? 

When brackiffi water is fcarce, or the wells become dry, 

4 D which 

[ *S 4 ] 

which is fomet’jTies the cafe, the Negroes frequently dig new 
wells upon the bottom ground near the fea; I do not know 
that it is ever the cafe that the Negroes have not a fufficiency of 
that brackifh water. 

What refource have the Negroes in cafe of drought', even of 
brackifh water, who live in the country, and at a diflance from 
the fea ? 

In that Ifland there are two fmall brooks of running water 
that iffue from a very high mountain; they run in one part or 
other the whole year round, but do not empty into the fea, but 
foak into the ground again before they come near it; there are 
fome wells upon the tops of the mountains, whether they are 
fupplied by fprings, or are only foakage out of the earth, I cannot 
determine ; that running water is brackifh, and I have frequently 
enquired into the caufe of it; the anfwer was, that it run through 
an earth that contained faltpetre. 

How many fathoms deep in general are thofe wells at the tops 
of the mountains, and are they ever dry ? 

There are fome wells near the tops of the mountains that are 
not a fathom deep; they generally contain water all, or molt of, 
the year, to the befl of my knowledge; but I am not particular 
in that, as I never faw them all parts of the year; the owners 
called them fprings. 

Were thofe wells brackifh water ? 

I cannot fay they were; they were the befl water that came 
out of the earth in that ifland; foon after I built a flore in the 
Road Town, which was not above thirty yards from the fea, a 
fpring came out from the very foundation of it, that fprung up 
water all the year roui.d without ceafing ; this water was reckoned 
the befl fpring water in the ifland; 1 have allowed fome fhips to 
fill their water calks at it; and many people were alfo furnifhed 
with it in the Road Town. 

Did you refide any time, and for how long together, on any 
other fugar plantation th_n Mr. bickering's ? 

I never refided upon any other fug. r plantation. 

When Negroes are at work in the field in Tortoh, does the 
climate make it neceffary that they fhould have any other cloath- 
ing upon them than decency merely requires ? 

I think that a pair of trowfers and a fhirt are quite fufiicient 


t 285 ] 

for a working Negro in the field, and a petticoat and jacket for the 
women is an equivalent. 

Do you think that a fhirt is abfolutely neceflary for a Negro man 
while he is at work ? 

I cannot fay it is abfolutely neceflary j yet it appears to be bene¬ 
ficial, and what they would chufe. 

Do you mean to fay that a Negro man would rather have his 
fhirt on than off while he is at work ? 

Thofe that work out in the field, that have a fhirt on, I have ne¬ 
ver known pull it off upon that occafion. 


When you removed to, and fettled in the Road Town, what fa¬ 
mily had you ? 

I had a clerk and two apprentices in my ftore, and fome few Black 
domeftics; I had no (landing number, fometimes three, four, 
or five. 

Did you ever u(e to buy any vegetables, poultry, or other frefli 
meat, for the ufe of yourfelf and family, from Negroes ? 

Sometimes there were vegetables or fowls to be bought from the 
Negroes, but it was very rare, and very few that we could get in 
that way. 

How did you generally fupply your family with thofe articles ? 

Our fupply in the (lores is very fmall; we generally ufe fait pro- 
vifions, fuch as beef or pork, and fometimes dried peafe from Ame¬ 
rica j frefh meat is both dear and fcarce through the whole ifland, 
but there is both beef and mutton at times to be bought, which are 
killed by the planters; we have a good fupply at times of fifli, 
which are always fold very reafonable. 

Do you ever remember, while you were at Tortola, the wreck 
of any (hip or (hips upon that ifland, or any of its neighbouring 
keys ? 

I have heard of a great number of wrecks of (hips that have 
been caft away upon the ifland or reefs of Annigado, but I never was 
at that reef. 


Do you in particular remember the wreck of a Spani(h (hip, out 
of which a great number of dollars were taken or faved by the people 
of Tortola ? 

I have heard many accounts of it j it happened a year or two be¬ 
fore I went to Tortola. 


[ 286 ] 

Do you remember to have heard alfb of lieutenant-general Flem¬ 
ing, who was commander in chief of the Leeward Jflands, and of 
which Tortola is a part, coming down to that Ifland from St. 
Chriftopher’s to demand the money fo faved from that wreck, and 
to fecure it for the right owners ? 

I have heard that he came down for that very purpofe, but it was 
before the time of my arrival there. 

Did you hear that he was able to fucceed, and to bring thofe per- 
fons who had taken that money to juftice ? 

I have been told that fome perfons who got the money gave it 
up to him j and I have been informed that feveral delivered none 
up ; I never heard of any being brought to juftice upon that ac¬ 

Hew long may you at any time have been upon the ifland of 
Barbadoes ? 

I have been two or three times; but I never ftaid above two 
weeks at one time. 

While you were there, did you refide upon any fugar planta¬ 
tions ? ° 

I did not. 

How often, and what was the greateft length of time that you 
have been at Antigua ? 

I do not exadtly recoiled the number of times, whether it was 
four, five, or fix; the greateft length was, I believe, three or four 
weeks at a time; but I cannot be particular. 

Did you ever refide upon any fugar plantations at that ifland ? 


How often, and for what ipace of time, may you have been in St 
Chriftopher’s ? 

I was never upon that ifland but once, and that was for a very 
fhort time. 


Was you ever upon any fugar eftates in that ifland? 


When you refided in the Road Town at Tortola did you keep 
any horfes ? 

I kept one horfe. 



t 2 87 ] 

How did you fupply that horfe with grafs ? 

The grafs that 1 was fupplied with was bought from Negroes, 
which they fometimes brought down to the Road in the evening 
to difpofe of; during crop-time we generally fed our horfes from 
cane-tops; I never bought any, but I fent for them; we had 
them for fetching. • 

Was the money that the Negroes received for the grafs con- 
fidered by you as their own property, and at their own dif- 
pofal ? 

Yes, furely;—but the young men of our flore generally paid 
them in tobacco, or fait herrings. Sometimes they were paid in 
Ofnaburghs or coarfe linens. 

Did not other merchants who refided in the Road Town, and 
who had no cftates of their own, fupply their horfes in the fame 
way ? 

1 apprehend fo } feveral of the merchants in the Road had 

What do you compute that it cofl you, per day, to feed your 
horfe with grafs, turning the money, or the goods which you 
had given the Negroes in exchange for it, into the value of fter- 
ling money ? 

The grafs they bought every night when the Negroes came 
was two bits worth, which is about 11 d. fterling j we generally 
gave our horfes a good deal of oats, or two bits worth of grafs 
would not have been fufficient, I think. 

Does the practice of picking grafs on plantations every evening, 
as you have mentioned, continue all the year, or only out of 
crop-time ? 

It continues all the year. 

Do they pick grafs upon plantations, notwithflanding they have 
cane tops to feed their cattle with, in crop time ? 

They do. 

Does not the giving away of cane tops, as in your cafe, pre- 
fuppofe that the planters have a fufficiency of that kind of pro- 
vender for their flock, without taking off their Negroes from the 
bufinefs of making fugar, and attending the mill, to go in fearch 
of grafs ? 

I never faw any cane tops carried home for the ufe of the plan- 

4 E ters 

[ 288 ] 

ters horfes or fto.k; the draft mules at the mill live entirely 
upon them during crop-time. 

Are not cane tops reckoned the mofl nourilhing green food that 
can be given to a horfe, or cattle of any kind ? 

They are a nourilhing food to the mules, who altogether live 
upon them, and to horfes alfo ; I do not know whether the horned 
cattle, Iheep, and goats, do eat them or not. 

Are not hogs generally fattened with them by thole who can 
get them ? 

Thofe Negroes in a plantation who have a hog to feed have 
what quantity they pleafe to carry off for that purpofe j and it is 
reckoned to make the beft pork that are fed upon them; but lhey 
had generally, I think, the fcum or fkimmings of the boiling 
of fugar. 

Was that fkimming allowed them by their mailers along with 
the cane tops ? 

I am not able to fay whether it was allowed or otherwife, but 
fome of the prime Negroes, I think, would not be debarred of it, 
as it feems not fit for any other ufe that I know of. 

Did you ever know a Negro flogged for tiling the Ikimmings 
in feeding his hogs ? 

J never did that I remember. 

Had Mr. Pickering a diftillery for rum upon his plantation ? 

He had. 

You are alked then, as you refided with him fo long upon his 
plantation, whether thofe Ikimmings of the fugar coppers are 
not a main ingredient ufed in the diftil-houfe, in fetting of liquor 
(as it is called) in the liquor calks of the dillil-houfe for the 
making of rum ? 

They are not a main ingredient as I apprehend ; it is the 
mobiles that is the main and principal ingredient; Ikimmings I 
think are alfo ufed in fetting their calks for diftilling. 

But are they not ufed along with the mobiles ? 

They are always, I apprehend, ufed with the mobiles. 

In what imported articles did you trade when you lived at 




[ X 

Iii a general aflbitment of moft kinds of manufactured goods, 
as allb in Irifh provifions; fometimes in American cargoes of 
flour, bread, and various other articles, but no corn. 

Did you ever fell any of your dry goods, fuch as Ofnaburghs, 
checks, and other coarfe linens, and other articles, to the Ne¬ 
groes ? 

I have. 

Did you ever fell any herrings, dry fait fifti, or pickled 
mackerel ? 

I have frequently imported and fold fait herrings from Ireland ; 

I never imported or fold any cod fifli, or mackerel, that I 

For whofe ufe were thofe herrings bought by the perfons to 
whom you fold them ? 

I fold them to the planters, which they generally made ufe of 
in crop time to give to the Slaves that were generally employed at 
hai d work the whole fix days of the week. 

Are herrings a perifliable commodity, or will they keep the 
year round in the Weft Indies ? 

They are a perifhable commodity; I do not think that we 
ever kept any the year round in my ftore. 

Can they keep the year round ? 

I think they will not keep a whole year good in that Ifland. 

Have you ever known a fcarcity to prevail in the Ifland of 
Tortola, while you were there, either in your own ftore, or in 
thofe of the other merchants in the Ifland, in the articles of pro- 
vifion ufually imported by merchants there ? 

I do not know any inftanccs of great fcarcity, fince I kept a 
ftore in the Road at Tortola, of Irifh fait provifions; l have 
known a fcarcity of flour and bread, but not to any great diftrefe, 
amongft the White people. 

, Was there always a conftant fupply of fuch articles of im¬ 
ported provifions as were generally given to the Negroes, equal 
to the confumption of the Ifland at all times of the year ? 

There was never to my knowledge any certain fupply of provi¬ 
fions fuitable for the Negroes at all times of the year; there was 



[ 290 ] 

more frequently no neceflary food for the Negroes to be bought at 
the merchants ftores. 

Was you proprietor of any fugar plantation at Tortola, or elfe- 
where, in the Weft Indies ? 

I never had any concern in any degree in planting, or as proprie¬ 
tor of any plantation. 

Did you deal in articles of iron ware? 

In feme few articles, but in no great way. 

Did you ever fell any Negro chains to the planters ? 

I never fold any. 

How many Slaves was you ever owner of at any one time ? 

I never had more than four or five at one time. 

When you came to England, did you bring them with you ? 

One of them came with me, the others I left at the ftore with 
a partner that I then had, who ftaid in the ifland feme time after 
I quitted it laft. 

What became of thofe Slaves that you left behind you at 
Tortola ? 

They were fold or difpofed of by my partner, I believe, as our 
joint property j I think it was three or four years after I left the 

You have faid, you never fold any Negro chains to the planters; 
had you ever any to fell ? 

I never had. 

During your flay in Tortola, was there any complaint that White 
people could not obtain redrefs by law for any injuries which they 
might have received ? 

We had no complaint of that fort in the ifland amongft the 
White people; if one committed a capital offence, as murder, the 
inhabitants were fenfible that there was not a fufficient authority 
in that ifland to bring them to trial and punifhment, without 
a fpecial commiflion firft had from the governor general. 

Did any inftance occur, during your ftay there, of a murder 
committed by one White perfon upon another? 

There was one inftance while I was there. 


t 291 ] 

Do you know what became of the perfon who committed 
that crime ? 

He was tried in confequence of a commiflion fent down by the 
governor-general; he was tried by a jury, and he was acquit¬ 
ted by them. 

Do you know whether redrefs was to be had, on application to 
thejuftices, on complaints being made of fmaller offences com¬ 
mitted by one White man againft another ? 

Redrefs was to be had upon every occafion before the gover¬ 
nor and council, when the court fat, and application was made 
to them. 

Did White mechanics or tradefmen purfue their occupations 
in Tortola throughout the day, as is ufual in other countries? 

Yes; 'in like manner. 

Did you ferve on the jury who tried and acquitted the man for 
murder ? 

I did not. 

Did your religious profeffion exempt you from it ? 

It does exempt us from it. 

Of what profeffion are you ? 

Of the people called Quakers. 

The Witnefs then fa id, I muff here obferve, that in fpeaking of 
Tortola, I alfo include the iflands commonly called the Virgin 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Martis , 27 0 die Aprilis 1790. 

Henry HEW DALRYMPLE, Efquire, called in 

and examined. 

Were you ever on the Cpaft of Africa ? 


4 F 

When, , 

[ S92 ] 

When, for how long, in what fituation, and on what part or 
parts of the coaft ? 

I was on the coaft in the year 1779, from May to the end of 
September; I was then a lieutenant in the army, in the 75th re¬ 
giment; I was in garrifon at Goree, but I was on different parts 
of the coaft. 

Did you obtain any information, when on the coaft cf Africa, 
refpediing the modes of obtaining Slaves ? 

I did ; I made it my bufineft to enquire particularly into that 

Whence did you obtain any intelligence on this head ? 

From the merchants who carried < n that trade at Goree, the 
French Mulattoes, and from the natives of the coaft oppofite to 
the ifland, particularly from the Maraboo or chief of Dacard, who 
fpoke French remarkably well, and was a very fcnftble and intel¬ 
ligent man. 

Were the inhabitants of Goree, whom you have juft mentioned, 
refpedlable and intelligent perfons ? 

As much fo as people in that fituation generally are. 

Were you often on fhore ? 

Very frequently; I was at Goree fome months, and I do not 
recolledt a week ever paffed without my being on the continent 
more than once; my intention in going to the continent was to 
inform myfelf of the fituation of the country, particularly to en¬ 
quire mto the manner in which Slaves are made, becaufe having 
Slaves mvfelf in the Weft Indies, I wifhed to know how they 
were procured; having heard lo many different reports with re¬ 
gard to the manner of procuring them, I wifhed to afcertain the 
matter beyond a doubt, if poflible. 

What then was the iffue of thefe enquiries into the modes of 
making Slaves ? 

I was informed by the Mulatto merchants of Goree, and by 
the natives of the continent oppofite to the ifland, that the great 
droves (called, Caffillas or Caravans) cf Slaves which are brought 
from the interior parts of Africa, by the way r of Galam, to Senegal 
and Gambia, were prifomrs of war ; but the greater part, if not 
all of the Slaves which were fold to the veffels at Goree, and at 
the p rts in that neighbourhood, were procured either by what 
they called the grande pillage (as I received the information in 


[ 293 ] 

French), or by the letter pillage, or by individuals ftizing fuch 
people as they could make themfelves matters of, and felling 
them for Slaves. What is meant by the grande pillage is this; 
the king fends a number of foldiers, fometimes 300 or 400, and 
fometimes, I have been informed, 2 or 3000 men, who attack a 
village, fometimes bv letting fire to it, and feizing as many of 
the inhabitants as they can, and felling them to the Europeans 
as Slaves •, the fmaller parties generally lay in wait about the 
villages (always I believe), and take fuch people as they can fur- 
prize, who are likewife fold as Slaves ; individuals, often two or 
three men, who do not belong to the king, but are private robbers 
of men, when they can furprize any man, woman, or child, bring 
them down to the coaft and fell them, where it is well known no 
queftions are alked concerning the means by which they get 
pofletTion of them. 

You have fpoken of prifoners of war; did you hear any thing 
particular concerning the nature of thofe wars ? 

I have heard, and it feemed to be a matter of fufficient noto¬ 
riety, and to be univerfally believed on the coatt, that thefe 
wars were undertaken lolely for the purpofe of procuring Slaves > 
whenever I have met any of .the Negroes in the Welt Indies, 
who had been brought to the coaft in thefe caffillas or droves 
from the interior parts of the country, I have made it my 
bufinefs to learn of them in what manner they had been made 
prifoners, and on almoll every occafion the refult of my enquiries 
was, that they had been taken by furprize, either at night in their 
v.llages, or had been l’urprized ftraggling at a diftance from their 
huts (the women particularly), or fometimes attacked in culti¬ 
vating their fields. I do not mean to fay that there are no wars 
in Africa but what arife fiom a defire of making Slaves, but from 
the almoft invariable anfwers that have been made to my en¬ 
quiries, the greater part, or ahnoft all of them proceed from this 

Is there any peculiarity in the mode of African wars, tending 
to confirm your opinion of the motive with which they are car- 
lied on ? 

Upon the coaft the wars are of fuch fhort continuance, that 
they feldom laft above eight or ten days, as I was informed by 
every body on the coaft, the natives as well as otheis; and it 
feldom happens that many prifoners, even in the mod decifive 
actions, are made, the number feldom amounting to above twenty 
or thirty. When I mentioned to the Maraboo of Dacaid, who 


[ 294 3 

was one of thofe from whom I obtained this information, and 
who was himfelf the third in command, the flrength of our 
armies, and the numbers that are killed and made prifoners in 
our wars, he did not believe what I told him, as there had been 
no in fiance of any adtion in his country, where more than the 
number that I have already mentioned were either made prifoners 
or killed. 

Did you hear of marauding expeditions, as being common in 
the interior country ? 

I did not; I underftood that it is principally on the coafl that 
thefe marauding parties are formed. 

What grounds have you for fuppofing that, kidnapping is prac- 
tifed ? 

The general report and inflances that I myfelf have known— 
the thing is fo notorious that I have never heard any perfon, 
French or native, who denied it; but I have known inflances 
myfelf cf this practice. Soon after my arrival at Goree, a man 
was brought to the garrifon for fale, who faid he was a Free Man, 
who was a meflenger from Senegal, I think to Rufifco;—the two 
men who offered him for fale did not deny that he was a Free 
Man, but rather boafted of what they had done in having made 
themfelves mailers of him. 

Here the Witnefs, being indilpofed, de fired to have leave 
to withdraw. 

And the Committee agreeing thereto. 

He withdrew accordingly. 

L,unce y 24 ° die Maii 1790. 

Henry HEW DALRYMPLE, Efquire, called in. 

Mr. Dalrymple requelled to have his former examination read 
over to him, as he was fo ill at the time he gave his evi¬ 
dence, that he apprehends he may not have been perfectly 


[ * 5>5 ] 

And the fame being read accordingly > 

Mr. Dalrymple requeued to know whether he might be pcr- 
mitttd by the Committee to explain his examination in a few 

And leave being given accordingly, Mr. Dalrymple pro¬ 
ceeded as follows: 

When I was afked the following queftion, “ Did you hear of 
*« marauding expeditions as being common in the interior coun- 
“ try?” I did not know how far the meaning of the word “ inte- 
«« rior’’ extended ; for I fuppofed that it applied to the inteiior 
parts of the country where 1 was at the time; all the information 
that I received from the Slaves themfelves whom I faw in the Weft 
Indies tended to convince me, that they were procured in that man¬ 
ner in the interior parts of Africa. 

Were many Slaves brought to that part of the Coaft which bor¬ 
ders on Goiee during your ftay there ? f 

A confiderable number were brought. 

How many were generally brought at a time ? 

They were brought in fmall numbers ; I mean feldom more that! 
three or four together, but oftener only by a Angle Slave. 

; i - ' i < 4 

Did you learn any thing refpedling a practice of European tra¬ 
ders advancing goods to the kings or chiefs of the country to induce 
them to feize on their lubjcdts, or commit depredations in the neigh¬ 
bouring diftridis ? 

I did ; I always ur.derftood that it was a common pradtice, and I 
was confirmed in this by the Mulatto Traders at Goree, not one of 
whom ever thought of denying it. 

Whilft you were at Goree, did you fee or hear any thing of de¬ 
predations committed by the Moors for the purpofe of obtaining 
Slaves ? 

I did; it was a notorious pradtice, and I myfelf have feen 
feveral Slaves in Africa, who allured me they were taken by the 
Moors; one of thefe was in the Mlmd of Goree, and three others 
on board a Slave Ihip; one of the women whom I faw on board 
of Ihip cried very much, and feemed to be in very great diflrefs; 
the told me Ihe hid been taken not long before by the Moors; 

q G the 

[ 2S>& 1 

the other two Teemed to be more reconciled to their fate, but af- 
fured me they had been made prifoners in the Tame manner. 

What was the general punifhment of crimes. To far as came to 
your knowledge, in the part of Africa you vifited ? 

All crimes were punifhed by Slavery. 

- Have any of the natives of that country Slaves of their own, 
whom they keep for domeftic purpofes ? 

In the lfland of Goree, of which the greater part of the inha¬ 
bitants are Mulattoes, Slaves are common, but on the Continent 
they are in very fmall numbers indeed among the natives, and 
treated To well, eating with their mailers, working along with them, 
and being as well clothed (which they generally are, I think), that it 
is impofiible to diftinguilh them from free men, unlefs the circum- 
flance of their being Slaves is mentioned j I never Taw any whip or 
instrument of torture ufed on that part of the Coaft, nor do I be¬ 
lieve, from the enquiries I made, that Slaves are treated with Teverity, 

Do the natives at that part of the Coaft believe in forcery or 
witchcraft ? 

I underftand they do. 

Do you know whether frauds are ever committed by the Euro¬ 
pean merchants in conducing their trade with the natives ? 

I know they are frequent, becaufe I have heard the Mulattg 
merchants boaft of it i I have heard likewife that captains of Eu¬ 
ropean fhips boaft of deceiving them, by giving them lefs goods than 
they promifed, and of worfe quality. 

Did any inftances come to your knowledge of depredations be¬ 
ing committed on the Coaft by European traders? 

There was a fhip, while I was at Goree, which attempted to 
Tail on of the bay with Negroes on board (I cannot afeertain the 
number, but there were a good many) without paying for them; 
—I was on the hill when we received orders to fire at the fhip to 
bring her to ; and this was the reafon given for flopping her;— 
it was befides talked of there as a practice not uncommon, and from 
circumftances which came to my knowledge while I was at Goree, 
as well as from what I heard, I have no doubt but the thing is 

What were the chief productions of the part of Africa which 
• you vifited ? 7 


[ 297 1 

Cotton of three different kinds, indigo, dyes of different kinds, 
fpices, fugar-canes, tobacco, millet of two different kinds, ebony, 
and different kinds of cabinet woods.—The fugar-canes were re¬ 
markably fine, and by thofe who faw them, and were judges, 
reckoned better than any produced in the Weft Indies. The cotton 
likewife was of a remarkably fine ftaple; and I was informed by 
Mr Ofwald, an African merchant, that this cotton, of which he had 
had many famples fent him from the Coaft of Africa, was confi- 
dered by the Englifii merchants as far fuperior to any that came 
from the Weft Indies; it grows fpontaneoufly almoft every where, 
though it is fometimes cultivated.—The indigo is likewife of a 
better quality than what grows in our lflands; it is reckoned equal 
to the indigo of Guatimala.—I have myfelf fpecimens of theft; 
different things.—They have befides at Goree a root which dyes 
a beautiful fcarlet, and the leaves of which dye a bright yellow, 
or orange colour. 

Do the foil and climate feem favourable for the growth of 
fpices ? 

I believe they are both extremely fo. The cardamums are 
found in great perfection near Cape Verd. 

From what you faw in Africa, what opinion did you form of the 
.capacity of the Negroes ? 

As far as I was able to judge, they had as much natural capacity 
as any other people whatever. 

What opinion did you form of their temper and difpofition? 

They appeared to me (and I believe I had as many, or more, 
opportunities of knowing them than any Englifhman on the Coaft, 
for I was conftantly among them) to be an humane, holpitable, 
well-difpofed people. 

Did you fie any thing to induce you to believe their indifpo- 
fition to labour was fuch that they would not cultivate the foil for 
the natural productions of their country, if they were encouraged 
fo to do? 

I did not; on the contrary, the part of the country where I 
was, was remarkably well cultivated, and from their general difpo¬ 
fition to labour, I cm convinced, that had they a proper market 
for the produce of their country, they would be as induftrious as 
any people in Europe ; I have remarked, that in thofe parts of the 
Coaft w'here there is little or no trade for Slaves, they are more in¬ 
duftrious than in thofe places where that trade is carried on. 

[ 2 9 8 ] 

Have they any manufactures on that part of theCoaft? 

They have cotton cloths, which are almoft equal in quality, for 
the workmanlhip, to any made in Europe; they likewife woik, in 
gold, filver, and iron, and their workmanlhip is remarkably neat; 
they work likewife in wood. As a proof of their induftry, a great 
part of the canoes which are ufed upon the Coaft near Goree are 
made from trees which are eut down at the diffance of fome leagues 
from the Coaft; they are Ihaped upon the fpot where they are cut 
down, but not hollowed, and a e dragged overland to the fliore 
where the work is completed. The people who live in the woods* 
in the inland parts of the country, make mortars, which are ufed 
in pounding the millet, and which, though very heavy, they carry 
over the country on their heads. 

Do they work in leather ? 

They do; th y make faddles, bow-cafes, fcabbards, gris-gris, 
and many other things, which are finilhed with great neatnefs. 

# Were you much and often in the country, and amongft the na¬ 
tives, during your Hay at Goree? 

I was; few days pafled without my being on the Continent. 

Were you led by any particular circumfiance to proftcute any 
enquiry into the fituation of the natives of the country, and into the 
modes of obtaining Slaves ? 

Before I left England, I purchafed all the hiftories of the Coaft 
which I could procure, in order to inform myfclf of the fituation 
of the country ; from thofe books (from La Brue particularly) l 
learned that it was a common practice for the kings of the coun ry 
to feize their fubjedts when they wanted European goods, and to 
fell them for Slaves, and therefore I wilhed to know whether their 
report was founded in fadf. 

Did any incident ever fall within your notice refpedting the lofs of 
feamen on board a Slave vefiel ? 

I was on board the Atalanta floop of war, when we fell in with 
a ftiip from the river Gambia, on board of which all the crew 
had died but two, (the captain, whofe name was Heatly, and the 
mate); I went on board this vefiel; the captain was laying on deck 
on a mattrafs, and the mate had all the appearance of bein^ in bad 

Were you ever on board any other Slave vefiel ? 
I have. 



[ s 99 ] 

When, and upon what occafion, and what did you remark con¬ 
cerning the fituation of the Slaves on board ? 

I was on board a Slave veffel for two months, on my paflage 
from Africa to the Weft Indies ; the Slaves were exceeedingly un¬ 
happy on board, and made many attempts to rife; when they 
found they could not fucceed in their attempts, they begged that 
we would allow them to throw themfelves overboard; they were 
perpetually regretting their own country. 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies ? 

I have been there at three different times. 

When, and on what iflands ? 

In the year 1773, at Grenada only, where I remained for fix 
months; in the years 1779 and 1780, in the iflands of Antigua, 
Barbadoes, Tobago, St. Lucia, and St. Chriftopher’s; and in the 
years 1788 and 1789, at the iflands of Grenada, Cariacou, St. Vin¬ 
cent’s, and Tobago. 

On your firft vifit to the Weft Indies, what impreflion was ex¬ 
cited in your mind refpeding the general treatment of the Negro 
Slaves ? 

That they were treated very cruelly. I lived near the market¬ 
place of Saint George’s at Grenada, where Negroes were flogged 
every day ; I faw many of them flogged; they were tied down 
upon the ground, and whipped with fuch feverity, that every ftroke 
brought blood, and very often took out a piece of the flefh; I like- 
wife faw them often in chains, marked in the manner mentioned 
above. I know other inftances of feverity. It was notorious in 
the ifland, that a French planter fent for a furgeon to cut off the 
leg of a Negro who was in perfect health, as a punifhment for 
having run away; the furgeon refufed to perform the operation, 
as the leg was found ; the planter then took up an iron bar, 
with which he broke the leg in pieces, and then defired the fur¬ 
geon to cut it off, which he did. This was only one of many 
ads of cruilty performed by this man. 

In the cafes of the whippings you have mentioned, do you 
know whether they were inflided by order of the particular 
mafters of the Slaves who were whipped, or in the execution of 
judicial fentences ? 

I underftood by the particular orders of their mafters. 

Was any, and what punifhment inflided on the perpetrator of 
the barbarous adion you have lately fpecified ? 

4 H TsJV' 

[ Soo ] 

No punifhment was inflidted upon him; nor did I underftand 
that it was the public opinion that any ought to have been in¬ 
flidted, for he was equally well received in fociety after this adtion 
as before. 

Are you certain that this man was well received by any perfons 
who adm.tted the fadts, in the manner you have ftated them, 
and that ignorance of thefe fadts might not have been the ex¬ 
planation of his continuing to be well received ? 

He was received by yeople from whom I had the information 
myfelf of his condudt; and I believe that there was not an in¬ 
habitant of Grenada who was not well acquainted with the cir- 

During your flay at Grenada in 1773, did you often go into the 

I did frequently; almoft every day. 

Did, or did not, a confiderable number of the Field Negroes 
bear on their bodies the marks of the whip ? 

Yes j a great many did. 

Did you ever fee them working in the fields in chains ? 

I have. 

What was the nature of the inftrument with which the Slaves 
were whipped? 

It is a thong of cow’s hide, about half an inch in breadth, with 
large knots upon it in feveral places. 

Did any remarkable occurrence happen to you on your firft 
arrival in Antigua, in your fecond vifit to the Weft Indies ? 

The day after I arrived in the ifland, I faw three or four old 
Negroes, who were reduced to fkin and bone, digging in the dung¬ 
hills in the ftreets for food; I enquired how they came to be in 
that fituation, and was informed, that they had been turned off by 
their owners, who could not afford to keep them j this they told me 
themfelves, and it was confirmed by White people who were with 
me at the time I faw them; I likewife understood at the fame time 
that it was not an uncommon practice. 

Had you an opportunity of making much obfervation upon the 
fituation of the Negroes, when you were in the Weft Indies, in 
the years 1779 an ^ 1780 ? 1 



[ 3 °* ] 

As I was perpetually removing from place to place with the fleet 
and army, I had very little opportunity of feeing how the Negroes 
were treated in the plantations. 

Speaking now of your laft vifit to the Weft Indies, in 1788 and 
1789, can you fay what was the numb<y of hours the plantation 
Slaves in Grenada generally worked in a day out of crop time ? 

I believe in general from day-light till it was dark; on fome 
plantations I have known them called out long before day-light; 
they are allowed in general an hour for breakfaft and two hours for 

How long did you refiJe in Grenada when you were laft in the 
Weft Indies, and were you much, and often in the country ? 

I was there about fifteen or fixteen months, and refided always 
in the country. 

After fun-fet, do the Slaves confider the time as their own, to be 
fpent altogether according to their inclinations ? 

They are generally fent to pick grafs after the field-labour is over, 
which field-labour generally lafts till fun-fet. 

Does this occupation of picking grafs fometimes take up much 
time ? 

It depends upon whether the grafs is found ealily, but they are 
obliged to bring a certain quantity at all times, which is fometimes 
attended with great difficulty, when it is fcarce, or to be brought 
from a great diftance, which is frequently the cafe; if they 
do not bring the quantity they are ordered, they are generally 

What may be the number of hours per day you have known 
Slaves to work in crop time ? 

I believe there is no ftated time for them to work in crop time, 
but they are obliged to work as long as they are able, which is as 
long as they can keep awake, or ftand upon their legs.—It fome¬ 
times happens, that falling afleep through excefs of fatigue, their 
arms are caught in the mill, and they are torn off.—I myfelf have 
feen feveral who had loft their arms in this way. 

What ftated days of relaxation were the Slaves allowed in the 
ifland of Grenada ? 

Except one or two holidays in the year, I never underftood or 
0 knew 

[ 302 ] 

knew that they had any time allotted them for their own amufe- 
ment or repofe. All the days of the week they labour in their 
mailers grounds, and on Sunday they labour to fupply themfelves 
with food for the reft of the week, and on this day, inftead of 
amufing themfelves, they do more work than on any other day of 
the week —It is true, that on this day they are not attended by the 
driver of the plantation, as without working hard on this day they 
could not have fubfiftence for the reft of the week. 

Do the Slaves work in the fields under the lafh of a driver ? 

I never faw a gang in the field but it was attended by one or more 
drivers, who have made frequent ufe of their whips. 

Have you feen women in thefe gangs, and are they alfo fubjedted 
to the whip ? J 

I have feen women in thefe gangs, and they are whipped as 

much as the men; there is no diftindlion made in that re- 

: From what y° u faw and learned, do you believe the Slaves 
in general were fed fufficiently, and with food of a rood 
quality ? * 

From what I law and heard, I believe that they neither receive 
a fufficient quantity of food, nor is that food often of a good qua¬ 
lity.—I made it my bufinefs to enquire of moft of the Negroes I 
fawthelaft time I was in the Weft Indies, whether they were 
well fed, and all the Field Negroes, without exception, declared, 
that they were not—their appearance confirmed it. 

Do you make any diftindtion between the Field Negroes and the 
domeftic ? * 

The domeftic Negroes are in general better fed than the Field 
Negroes: the quantity of food allowed a Negro employed in the 
fortifications, where the labour is of the moft fevere 'kind, was 
only, per week, feven pounds of bread, and four pounds of lalt 
filh ; and 1 think it probable they would be allowed as much pro- 
vifions by government as by their mafters.—Their employment 
was in carrying materials for the fortifications from the fhore to the 
top of Richmond Hill, which wasatleaft a mile and an half from 
the ftiore.—Thefe materials confifted of bricks, lime, and large 
p an s. 1 have feen them often carrying burthens, under which 
they were fearcely able to move. 


[ 303 ] 

Were thefe Slaves the property of government ? 

They were not. 

And then the Witnefs was direded to withdraw. 

Martis , 25 0 die Maii 1790. 

Henry HEWDALRYMPLE, Efquire, called in; and 

further examined. 

To whom then did they belong, or how were they fupplied ? 

They belonged to planters in the ifland, and were fupplied by 

In what manner were the planters paid for this fervice, or was 
it in the nature of a tax like ftatute labour? 

The planters were paid fo much a day for all the Slaves that 
were employed in the works; I am not pofitive whether they 
were paid by government or by the Ifland* but they did receive 
pay for their Negroes, and they rauft have conceived them to be 
well ufed, as they were very folicitous to get them employed on 
the works. 

Did any thing fall within your notice, which induced you to 
believe, that the Slaves being fupplied with fufficient food or not, 
muft depend on the mafter’s difpofition ? 

I believe that it depends entirely on the difpofition and ability 
of their mafters, whether they are ill or well fed; I know at 
different plantations they are differently fed at different times; I 
am fpeaking of Grenada. 

Did you know any inftances of Slaves robbing the provifion 
grounds of neighbouring plantations ? 

I did ; I dined at the houfe of a gentleman, who told me that 
his grafs field had been plundered the night before by the 
Negroes of a neighbouring plantation; fome of whom he could 
have taken and puniihed ; his reafon for not taking them was, 
that he knew that their allowance from their mafter was fo fmall 
that without robbing others they could not have exifted: I do 
not pretend to fav that they are generally fo ill fed as to be 

4 / obliged 

[ 304 ] 

obliged to rob for their fubfiftence j I only fpeak to this particu¬ 
lar inftance, though I underftood that there are other planters 
that treat their Negroes in this manner j the place was near 
town, and grafs fells at a great price. 

Is grafs ar times fold at a high price ? 

It is. 

Whilft in the Weft Indies did you ever hear an argument 
maintained refpedting the comparative profitablenefs of keeping 
up the ftocks of Slaves by the births, and the contrary fyftem of 
working them out, and depending for fupply on imported Afri¬ 
cans ? 

I have heard that fubjedt often difeufledj and the general opi¬ 
nion was, that it anfwered their purpofe better to import the 

Were Negro Slaves, during your refidence in the Weft Indies, 
confidered as being, and as having always been, under the pro¬ 
tection of law ? 

I do not believe that they were confidered as under the protec¬ 
tion of the law. My reafons for being of this opinion are, that 
in many inftances Negroes have been treated in a cruel manner, 
without the perfon who committed this cruelty being punifhed 
for it; and in more inftances than one, murders have been com¬ 
mitted, not only with impunity, but without its being fuppofed 
that they were fubjed to punifbment on this account. In the 
town of St. George, in the Ifland of Grenada, a mafon, whofe 
name was Chambers, killed a Negro tn the middle of the day (I 
think in the church-yard), and no notice was taken of this. I 
had often heard this circumftance when I was firft in the Weft 
Indies, and made it my bufinefs, when laft in Grenada, to know 
whether the report was true. I met many people who had heard 
and believed this report; but the prefent chief judge of Gre¬ 
nada (who has permitted me to ufe his name on this occafion) 
aflured me that it was true, and that he himfelf was in the 
town of Saint George when the murder was committed, but he 
was not then judge. Another inftance of a planter who flogged 
his driver to death; this fad was notorious in Grenada. Amongft 
many who mentioned the circumftance to me, one gentleman 
told me that this very perfon had boafted of it to him: he was 
not punifhed for this, and by his mentioning it himfelf, it would 
appear that he was not apprehenfive of being punifhed. The 
circumftance which I have already mentioned of a French plan- 

1 ter 

* • 

[ 305 ] 

ter having broke the leg of his Negro, to oblige the furgeon to 
cut it off, who was not punilhed, I confider as another proot 
that aCts of cruelty were committed with impunity. In June 
]aft, in the town of Saint George, in Grenada, I law a Negrefs 
who was brought there to have her fingers cut off: this girl 
had committed a fault, and run away to avoid punilhment. Af¬ 
ter being abfent two days, Ihe was brought to her mafter, who 
fufpended her by the hands, and in that fituation Ihe was flogged 
in lb cruel a manner that her back, breaft, belly, and thighs, 
were cut in many places; Ihe was left fufpended by the hands 
till her fingers mortified, and in this fituation I faw her at Dr. 
Gilpin’s: no notice was taken of the man who had treated her 
in this manner, though this happened feveral months after the 
new a£t for the protection of Slaves was palled. I faw a Negrefs 
who had no teeth, though a young woman, and Ihe informed me 
that her miftrefs had with her own hands pulled out her teeth, 
and befides given her a fevere flogging, the marks of which fhe 
bore upon her body at that time, though Ihe had been flogged 
three years before. I enquired of feveral people whether this 
ftory that the told me was true, and they confirmed what Ihe 
faid; in Ihort, the faCt was notorious in the town of Saint George. 

Though in your opinion the Slaves do not enjoy the protection 
of law, yet does not the mafter s attention to his own. intereft 
guard them againft ill ufage, and lecure to them a fufficiency of 
food and other neceflaries ? 

Surely the mafter may proteCt them, and feed them, but the 
inftances 1 have mentioned of bad ufage and under-feeding are 
proofs that he does not always either proteCl or feed them as he 

Were there many eftates in Grenada, whilft you were there, on 
which the mafters were not refident.? 

There were many. 

Were you in Grenada at the time of palling the aCt of the 
aflembly of Grenada in the year 1788, intituled “ An ACt for the 
“ better Protection, and promoting the Increale and Population 
“ Of Slaves ?” 

I was. 

Were any objections made againft the provifions of that aCt, 
either by a/iy members of the legillative aflembly, or in other 



t 306 j 

The principal objection which I heard ufed againft the pafling 
of the adt was, the fear the planters had that the pafling of Jthis 
adt might make the Slaves believe that the authority of their 
mailers over them would be leflened; for many were of opinion 
that this adt when pafled would be of very little confequence in 
any other refpedt, as this law was made by themfelves againft 
themfelves, and to be carried into execution by themfelves ;—they 
faid befides, that fuch laws were unnecdfary for the protcdlion of 
the Negro where he was treated well; and that thofe who 
treated them ill had fo many opportunities of evading the laws, 
that they apprehended they would be of no ufe, as Negro evi¬ 
dence was not admitted. 

Can you take upon you to fay pofitively, that thefe arguments 
refpedting this law were held at the time of the adt’s pafling in the 
ifland of Grenada ? 

I can i I have heard them repeatedly. 

Were all the members of the legiflature planters ? 

They were not ; feveral were Slave merchants and ftore keepers 
in the town of St. George. 

At the time of the pafling of the adt juft mentioned, was the 
propofal in the Britifli parliament refpedting the abolition of the 
Slave Trade a matter of notoriety and general difcuflion in the 
ifland ? 

It was. 

Did any thing fall within your notice, which induced you to be¬ 
lieve that the pafling of the adt juft mentioned might in fome de¬ 
gree be owing to the knowledge of what was going forward in 
Great Britain ? 

From what I have frequently heard, I believe that was one of the 
principal reafons for pafling the bill; it was reported, that the 
Agent for the ifland had mentioned in a letter to the ifland, that 
unlefs they made laws for the protedlion of the Slave, the Britifli 
parliament would; but this letter I never faw, though I did every 
thing in my power to procure a reading of the Agent’s letters, to 
which, as a proprietor in the ifland, I thought 1 had a right. 

Though you did not fee this letter, can you take upon you to 
fay, that it was currently urged as an argument for the pafling of 
the law before mentioned, that fuch a letter had been written ? 

I have often heard it urged as an argument that the adt ought to 


[ 3°7 ] 

From all that you have feen and known of the fate of Grenada, 
is it your opinion that t: is law wili ba effectual for the ptrfonal 
protcaion of the Slave, and for fecuring his comfort in other 
refpeCt ? 

I believe it will not. As Neyro evidence is not admitted, it is 
in the power of thofe who ufe their Negroes ill to do it with im¬ 
punity j and btfi es, thofe who before the making of the 'aw did 
not ule their Negroes well, cannot be fuppofed to life them bet¬ 
ter fince the law was made, from the difficulty of proving fuch 
bad ufage, either in feeding or any thing elle. 

Have you any other reafon, befides thofe you have given, for 
thinking this law will be ineffedtual ? 

I believe that in a fmall fociety, fuch as that Oi Grenada, peo¬ 
ple who live in terms of intimacy and friendfhip with e ch other 
would diflike the idea of becoming fpies on each other’s a&ions, 
and of confequence would not inform, in ail probability, againft 
their neighbours ; but this is matter of op n ion. 

When you were in the Weft Indies, was the chaftity of the wives 
of Slaves fufficiently protected by law ? 

I believe it was not protected by law, and I myfelf have known 
inftances where it has been violated. 

Did any punifhment follow on fuch violations ? 

I never heard or underftood that there was any punifhment 
for it. 

Was it, or was it not, commonly underftood, when a vifitor 
went on a’ plantation, that he was offered by the mafter one of the 
mafter’s female Slaves ? 

That is certainly fometimes the cafe. 

Did you ever know any inftances wherein compulfion was ufed 
towards the female Slave to oblige her to confent to proftitu- 
tion ? 

I have known fuch. 

Do field Slaves often become poffeffed of confiderable property ? 

I do not pretend to fay they do not, but I never knew an in¬ 
fiance myfelf; and when I confider that the greater part of their 
time is employed for their mafters, I cannot conceive how they 
ihould have time to acquire confiderable property. 

4 K Did 

[ 3°8 ] 

Did inftances of expenfive feafts among the Field Slaves fie- 
quently, or ever, fall under your perfonal notice ? 


Did you ever know any inftances of Slaves, when grown unable 
to work, being turned off to provide for themfelves, either with 
or without the form of manumiflion ? 

I have j a Negro woman who had been my father’s property, 
on becoming unfit for labour by difeafe, was turned off by the 
truftees for the eftate, and fubfifted on charity in the town of 
Saint George. 

Was the tetanus or locked-jaw very fatal to the Negro infants 
in the ifland of Grenada, fo far as you had an opportunity of 
knowing ? 

It was very fatal to them; but there are means of treating the 
mothers and children, which renders this difeafe lefs fatal. Mr. 
William Bruce, a planter in Tobago, informed me, that for many 
years he loft almoft as many children as were born on his eftate 
by this difeafe j but from the time he adopted a mode of treat¬ 
ment which was recommended to him by a neighbouring planter, 
he had not loft one child by that difeafe; this he informed me of 
a few months ago in this town; he is lately gone to the Weft 
Indies. 7 

Did the Field Slaves appear to you to be in general chearful 
and happy ? 

They did not. 

Did you ever know any inftances of Slaves deftroying them¬ 
felves ? 

I have not immediately feen any Slave deftroy himfelf, but I 
know that the practice is not uncommon. 

Have you yourfelf any property in Grenada ? 

I have land in Grenada. 

Is it in cultivation ? 

It is not in cultivation. 

Was it ever in cultivation ? 

A part of it has been cultivated. 

To what parts of Africa did your perfonal obfervations ex¬ 
tend ? 


t 3°9 ] 

To the part of the kingdom of Cajore, which is oppofite to 
Go ee, and to the country to the north and fouth for fome 

How many leagues of coaft did that comprehend ? 

I cannot exaCtly fay j not a great many. 

How far have you been in the interior part of that conti¬ 
nent ? 

Not more than eight or ten miles inland from the (hore. 

Is the Committee to underftand, that your obfervations, as to the 
manners and cuftoms of the inhabitant^, and the marine of carry¬ 
ing on the Slave Trade, the natural productions of Africa and its 
manufactures, extend to no other part of Africa ? 

My perfonal obfervations do not extend beyond the country I 
have mentioned. 

Do you know whether indigo is not manufactured in that part 

of Africa ? ' . 

It is manufactured there fit for ufe; they dye cloths with it; 

I never faw it in the procets of manufacturing, but I have feen it 
after it has been manufactured. 

When you fpeak of their manufactures and workmanftiip in 
gold, filver, iron, and other materials, do you mean that thofe 
manufactures are the work of the Negroes, or by the Moors in 
that country ? 

Of both. 

What proportion, in point of number, do the Moors bear to 
the Negroes in thofe parts where you have been, to the beft of 
your information and judgment ? 

There are very few Moors in the country about Cape Verd ; I 
never faw more than five or fix of them together, and thefe were 
Grangers; 1 do not know that any Moors are fettled at Cape Verd 
and that country. 

Are there none at Goree, or any other parts where you have 
been ? 

None fettled at Goree or any other parts; at lead there were 
none when I was there. 

Are you fufficiently acquainted with the different fpecies and 


[ 3io ] 

quantity of African dye woods, fpices, gums, and other natu¬ 
ral productions of that country ufually imported into Great Bri¬ 
tain, as to fay whether the quantities of each fo imported are 
likely to be increafed with any advantage to the perfons who deal 
in thofe articles ? 

I do not pretend to fay what the demand for them in this 
country may be, but certainly with proper encouragement the 
Negroes might be brought to cultivate the different productions 
of that part of the coaft to a much greater extent than they do at 
prefent, were there a demand for them, as I obferved them to be 
remarkably induflrious wherever there has been a demand for the 
article or produce which they cultivated or manufactured. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Veneris , 28° die Maii 1790. 

ENRY HEW DALRYMPLE, Efquire, called in; 
and further examined. 

In what capacity or Ration did you go to Grenada in the year 
*773 ? 

I went on a vifit to my father, who was fettled on the ifland. 

How old was you at that time ? 

I fuppofe about twenty-one or twenty-two. 

Who was then governor of the Illand of Grenada ? 

Mr. Leybourne. 

During the fix months Ray you fay you that year made in' 
Grenada, did you chiefly refide in town or in the country ? 

Chiefly in town, though fomctimes in the country. 

Did you, during that period, make vifits to many of the plan¬ 
tations of the Britifli fe-tlers, and were your vifits of duration 
enough to enable you to obferve their fvRem for the management 
of their, and treatment of their Slaves ? 

I made, frequent vifits to the different plantations, but did not 
pay attention at that time to the mode of cultivating the eflates; 

7 but 

T 3 11 3 

but both in town and country, fa\v many inftances of cruel treat¬ 
ment of the Negroes—I mean to diftinguifh, that in town I faw 
the operation performed frequently of flogging them j in the 
country I had few opportunities of feeing them flogged, but faw 
many that bore the marks of fevere whippings. 

And then the Witnefs was diredted to withdraw. 

Sabbati , 29 0 die Mail 1790. 

Henry HEW DALRYMPLE, Efquire, called inj 
and further examined. 

Can you fay pofitively, that none of the punifliments which 
you fay you faw daily inflicted on the Negroes, in the Market¬ 
place in Saint George’s Town, were by order of a magiftrate ? 

I cannot fay that fome of them were not by order of a magif¬ 
trate, for I believe fome of them were, but many I was informed 
were inflidted by order of the matters j and I know by the laws 
of the ifland they have a power of that kind, for there is an adt 
for regulating the fees of the office of clerk of the market (whofe 
bufinefs it is to fuperintend the punifhment of Negroes upon the 
public parade) authorizing him to take eighteen pence for every 
Slave he fhall flog, whether it is done by order of the magiftrate 
or by the orders of the owner. 

When was that law pafled ? 

The 13th ofOdtober 1784. 

Have you no other grounds for your opinion, that fome of the 
Negroes which you faw daily flogged in the Market-place, in 1773, 
were punifhed by order of the magiftrates, than the regulations 
mentioned in a law pafled in 1784 ? 

I know that it was the pradffce at that time to flog Negroes by 
order of their matters, and I quoted this law to fliew that the 
pradtice ftill continued. 

Were the Negroes which you then ufed to fee daily whipped 
in the Market-place, the Slaves of perfons refiding in the town or 
belonging to the plantations ? 

4 £ I believe 


[ 3 J 2 1 * 

I believe they were generally Slaves belonging to people in 

Do you recollect the name of the French planter who you tv as 
informed had treated his Negroes fo barbaroufly ? 

I do not recolledt it. 

When was it faid to have been done ? 

I do not precifely remember the year. 

By whom were you informed of the circumftances of that a<ft, 
and particularly of that planter’s having been as well received by 
the community after as he was before it ? 

I was informed of his having committed this adlion by many 
people; it was a thing of common notoriety in the iflind, and [ 
bel eve that many Grenada gentlemen now in England have 
heard the ftory; I have fcen this man in the beft fociety of the 
ifland after this ftory was generally known, and after I myfelf 
knew it. 

You fay, ** You have feen this very man in the beft fociety of 
« the ifland of Grenada, after the report of his perpetra ing this 
« atrocious a£t was notorious in the ifland can you take upon 
you to fay, that that report was believed by the better fort of 
people in whofe company you fay you have feen him ? 
t I have reafon to think they did believe it. 

What are your reafons for that belief ? 

I heard the ftory mentioned by thefe people as a thing that was 
notorious, and what they did not feem to difbelieve. 

How often may you have feen him in this company ? 

At the diftance of 16 or 17 years it is not an eafy matter to 
recolledt, but I am fure I have feen him oftener than once. 

Is the Committee to collect then from what you have faid, that 
fuch atrocious a£ts are in the eftimation of the better fort of people 
in the ifland of Grenada worthy of no inveftigation or punifh- 
ment ? 

That is a point to which I cannot fpeak ; I cannot pretend to 
anfwer for men’s opinions, nor would I willingly believe that the 
better fort of people in that country approve of fuch actions; I 
only mean to fay, that it was notorious in the ifland that this fadt 


[ 3*3 ] 

had been committed; that I never heard or underftood that there 
had been any attempt to punifh him for this ; and that I faw him 
in good focietyin the ifland after 1 heard the circumftance men¬ 

To what ifland did you go to from Africa in the Slave fhip on 
board of which you faid you were two months ? 

To the Ifland of Antigua. 

-How long did you then refide in Antigua ? 

I think not longer than three weeks, perhaps not fo long. 

Do you recollect the time when you arrived there ? 

It was in the year 1779; 1 do not recollect the month, but it it 
is neceflary 1 could afcertain it from my papers. 

To what ifland did you go from thence? 

To Barbadoes. 

How long did you refide on thore in that ifland, at any one 
given time ? 

I think never more than a fortnight or three weeks. 

How long did you refide on fhore at Saint Chriftopher s ? 

I think about the fame time. 

Was your refidence in the iflands of Antigua, Barbadoes, and 
Saint Chriftopher’s, in the towns or in the country ? 

In the towns, almoft always. 

What bufinefs carried you to Grenada, in the year 1788 ? 

My own private affairs. 

In what year did you. firft become a proprietor of Slaves in the 
Weft Indies? 

At the death of my father (in the year 1775, I think) as his 

What was the nature and quantity of provifions you ufually allow¬ 
ed your Negroes per week? 

The eftate being in the pofleflion of a mortgagee, no account was 
given to me of the manner of providing for the Slaves. 

“ Did the planters in Grenada allow their Slaves any other, and 
what kind of provifion, befides that which grows in the ifland ? 

I I cannot 

[ 3*4 ] 

I cannot fpeak pofitively to this j but I underftand that they al¬ 
low them fait provifions and flour, which are brought from Europe 
and America. 

Is it not cuftomary for the planters in Grenada to diftribute regu¬ 
larly every week, or daily, exclufive of the ground provifions of the 
ifland, an allowance of fifh, fait beef, or pork, and at times various 
forts of corn, either in grain or meal ? 

I have underftood that many do fo, but I have been likewife in¬ 
formed that there are fome that do not. 

Is it not in general the cuftom to give fuch an allowance to the 
Slaves ? 

I believe it is. # 

In your laft refidence at Grenada, did you aflociate much with the 
principal planters in the ifland ? 

I did not. 

You have faid, “ That viGtors on plantations are fometimes 
“ offered by the matter of the houfe one of his female Slaves j” 
is the Committee to collect from this, that fuch is the diflolute- 
nefs of manners i$ that ifland, as that the means of gratifying 
libidinous inclinations conftitute a part of the hofpitality offered to 
guefts ? 

I have more than once been offered women in this way myfelf, 
on plantations where I have been, and I have heard from others 
that the fame has happened to them. 

Was this among the higher order of people in the ifland ? 

It was. 

Was it indifcriminately offered by married men as well as 
bachelors ? 

This offer was made to me by unmarried men. 

By whom in general are the inhabitants of the towns iu Gre¬ 
nada, who have no plantations of their own, furniflied with grafs 
and other green provender for their horfes ? 

I believe generally by the Slaves belonging to plantations in the 
neighbourhood of the towns. 

Do the Slaves receive to their own ufe the money or other com¬ 
modities which they receive in return for that provender? 

12 I believe 


[ 3*5 3 ' 

I believe they fometimes do; but I believe they fometimes fell 
the grafs on the matter's account, as I have been informed. 

Did you ever know a planter to fell grafs ? . 

I cannot fay that I did; but one of the reafons given to me in 
favour of an eftate near town was, that the gratt might be adv 
tageoufly difpofed of from its vicinity to the town. 

Did you infer from thence, that that grafs was to be difpofed of 
for the immediate benefit of the matter, or that it was a circum- 
ttance of eafe and advantage to the Slave, and might make his 
fituation more comfortable by the fale of it ? 

I underftood that it was for the advantage of the matter; I have 
known in fiances of planters felling milk and greens. 

Did you ever know a planter cultivate grafs for the fake of fell- 

^ do not know for what purpofes he cultivates grafs, whether for 
felling it, or for his cattle. 

As grafs is a vendible commodity by the Negroes to the Whites, 
is it not reafonable to fuppofe, that Slaves fometimes fell what they 
ought to carry to their matters, and thereby incur the puniihment 
vou have faid they received when they do not bring home as re Jon- 
able a quantity of it as their matters might think that they could 

Pr °Though it does not confift with my knowledge that that is the 
cafe, yet it very probably may be fo. 

Was you upon terms of intimacy, and was you frequently in 
company and converfation with the prefent Chief Juftice of Gre- 

I was frequently in company and in converfation with him. 

Was it in Grenada, or fince you left it, that he gave you leave to 
make ufe of his name rtfpeding a man of the name of Chambers 
killing a Negro in the in ddle of the day, as you have ftated ? 

It was in Grenada, and in his own houle. 

Did you underftand from 
mitted ? 

I think he faid in the year 

him at what time that fad was com- 
1768; but I cannot be pofitive. 

4 M 



[ 3i6 ] 

Do you know in what year a regular civil form of Britifh 
vernment was eftablifhed in Grenada? 

I do not know. 


Then His Majefly’s Proclamation of the 26th of 
March 1764, for the fale of lands in the Ceded 
Iflands, being read} 

The Witnefs was afked. 

In what year did the inftance that you have mentioned to have 
been notorious in the Ifland of Grenada, of a planter’s havin- 
liogged his driver to death, happen ? 0 

I cannot fay in what year, but it was before the year 1777, at 
which time I heard it. J J * 

Did the Chief Juftice mention any thing of that to you? 

I do not recoiled that he did, though he mentioned to me 
many inftances of cruelty to Slaves. 

. ^° U h f l ^^tioned an inftance which happened in Grenada 
in June laft, of a Negro girl having been moft cruelly flogged 
by her mafter in the manner defcribed by you, and that no nrnice 
was taken of it, although it happened feveral months after the 
new aft for the protection of Slaves was paffed in that Ifland 
and that you faw the Negro at Dr. Gilpin’s in Saint George’s 
Town in the m.ferable fituaf.on in which you defcribed her to 
have been ; was any information of this tranfadtion given bv vou 

[he hllnd T r **** * ^ kn ° wkd ^ to the Chief Juftice of 

I enquired after feme time, whether any notice had been taken of 
he abovcmentioned a tf of cruelty, and I did not find that any no- 
ticehad been taken of it } I did not give any information mvfelf 

forc'd of a. Jln0r doIkcow whether ke was in- 

yOU T e f P r ° prIet0r of a P lantatIon *'n the 
llland of Grenada, do you think that your interference in punifh- 

mg the mafter of that Negro would not have had fome effeCt 
Slaves ? Ca " y,ng int ° eXeCUtion the law for t! ‘e protection of 

At the time that this aCt of cruelty happened I was preparing 
to leave tne Ifland, and believed, as it was known to fo many 


[ 3*7 ] 

people, that the Chief Juftice mu ft have been informed of it by 
fomebody; and I did not know that no notice had been taken of 
it till I was juft fetting out for Europe, and I never faw the Chief 
Juftice after that. 

Where did the Chief Juftice generally refide ? 

In the town of Saint George. 

You have dated to the Committee as your opinion, “ That the 
“ law abovementioned for the protection of Slaves will not be ef- 
“ feCtual, becaufe, as Negro evidence is not admitted, it is in the 
“ power of thofe who ufe their Negroes ill to do it with impu- 
“ nity;” have you read the abovementioned law? 

I have, though not lately. 

Is there, or is there not, a claufe or claufes in that law whereby 
three perfons being freeholders of the qualification therein fpecified, 
in each parifh, are appointed guardians for the purpofe of carrying 
the falutary regulations of that law into execution, and whofe tefti- 
mony will be competent in all cafes nectflary thereto? 

\ I do recojleCt fuch claufes; the claufes of that aCt are all favour¬ 

able to the Slave, but while the evidence of a Slave is not admitted 
in a court of law, they can be of very little or no fervice to him; 
this is my opinion. 

Suppofing then that the Slaves lin Grenada fhould not have the 
provifion, cloathing, lodging, maintenance, and treatment preferr¬ 
ed and intended by that law, is it your opinion that they will be 
without remedy ? 

Notin every inftance; I believe that thofe who are difpofed to 
treat their Negroes ill may find ways of evading thefe laws; 
for laws for the protection of the Negroes, and feeding them, had 
been before patted, and which it would appear had not been effi¬ 
cacious, as it was found neceflary to make a new aCt; there is an 
aCt dated the ioth of December jyt 6 , for the allowance of provi¬ 
fion grounds to Slaves, by which it appears that four freeholders 
wei e appointed by the Juftices of each parifh to infpeCt the pre- 
vifion grounds of the plantations, to fee that there was a fufficient 
quantity of Negro provifious, but the preamble to the laft aCt 
feems to imply that this aCt had not been fufficiently attended 

Is it not common in Grenada for the plantation Slaves to bring 
to market, and particularly on Sundays, various articles of fruic 


[ 3>8 1 

and vegetables, poultry, pork, kids, and goats, their own property, 
and railed by them for fale ? 

I believe it is. 

* . ! 

How much in your opinion would it coft a perfon in Englifh 
money to maintain a horfe in grafs, and other green provender, 
per diem, in town? 

I fhould fuppol'e it coft me two (hillings a day each, to main¬ 
tain my horfes. 

Does the praftice of picking gr-fs by the Negroes upon the 
plantations daily, continue the whole year, or what portion 
of it? 

As the cattle upon a plantation muft be fed all the year round, 

I apprehend more or lefs grafs is picked all the year round •, but to 
this I cannot fpeak pofitiveiy. 

Are not the cane tops in crop time a food which cattle of all de¬ 
nominations are very tond of, and which in that feafon is fubftituted 
lor graft ? 

I believe in many plantations it is; but to that I cannot fpeak 
pofttively either, as I was fo little upon the plantations. 

Did not the Slaves employed in the fortifications at Grenada, ex- 
clufive of the rations of provifions which they received from govern¬ 
ment of feven pounds of bread, and four pounds of fait fifh per 
week each, receive from their mafters a fupply of the ground pro¬ 
vifions of the ifland to eat with that fiiit fifii ? 

1 undei flood thut this in general was their whole allowance, but 
in that 1 may have been miiinformed. 

In whofe department in the King’s military fervice did it lay to 
afccnaiu the rations or quantity of food neceflary for the fupport of 
the Slaves who worked on the fortifications ? 

I believe witli the commander in chief. 

Under what officer’s immediate infpedlion and direction was the 
labour on the fortifications allotted to the Negroes, and under whole 
lupervifion was it executed? 

I do not apprehend or believe that any military officer had, or 
could have, any thing to do with" the labour of the Negroes; 
their appointment was, as men of profeflional knowledge, to fee 
that the works on the fortifications were properly executed. The 
Negroes employed in thefe woiks, with regard to the quantity 

L 3»9 J 

of labour, mull be confidered as entirely under the management 
and infpedion of managers and overfeers; no European officer 
can be fuppofed to be lo good a judge, either of the quantity of 
labour which the Negroes are able to bear, or of the quantity or 
quality of their food, as the Weft Indians themfelves. 

Do you mean thereby that there was no perfon appointed on 
the part of the crown, competent to judge of ihe nature of the 
contrads in refped to the food which the Negroes were to receive, 
or the quantity of labour they were to perform, but that the 
king’s fervice, in both refpeds, was left to be provided for by 
thofe only who were moft interefted in the contrad? 

I have already faid, that the quantity of food was fixed by the 
commander in chief; every perfon who fent Negroes to the for¬ 
tifications fent a perfon, either a White Man or a Black Man, to 
take care of them ; and there is, I fuppofe, a perfon fet over all 
the Slaves, to fee that they do their duty. 

Was that perfon (did you imagine) appointed by the command¬ 
er in chief on the part of the king, or by the planters f 

By the commander in chief. 

Were there any foldiers employed to work on the fortifications 
in Grenada ? 

I cannot pofitively fay ; but I do not recoiled to have feen any 
when 1 was upon the hill. 

Do you know the rations of food allowed to the common fol¬ 
diers in Grenada ? 

I do not at this moment recoiled. 

You have faid, “ That you have feen the Slaves employed on 
•< the fortifications in Grenada carrying fuch burthens in that 
•* fervice that they ftaggered under and were fcarcely able to 
«« move to whom was this excefs of labour to be afcribed, 
to the perfon appointed on the part of the king to fee that the 
Slaves did their work, or to the perfons fent by the planters with 
their Slaves to take care of them ? 

I cannot pretend to fay to whom it was to be afcribed. 

You have faid, “ That this fervice on the fortifications was 
«C deemed fo profitable a one by the planters, that they were very 
«« felicitous to get their Slaves employed in it;” is it to be 
imagined then that the over-burthening of the Slaves, in the 

4 JV manner 

t 3 2 ° 1 

manner defcribed by you, could be afcribed to the dire&ions of 
the perfons fent by tlie planters to take caie of tlietr Slaves ? 

I fhould think not. 

Do you, or do you not, know that there is a particular a£t of 
the afiembly of the Ifland of Grenada, conftituting a joint com¬ 
mittee of the council and alterably for the purpofe of feeing that 
the fervice of the Slaves on the fortifications, and their food, are 
properly taken care of? 

I believe there is, but it is in the power of the lower orders of 
thole who are employed by the committee to ill-treat the Slaves 
in many refpedls, without its coming to their knowledge. 

How is it in the power of any fuch perfon to interfere with 
the labour of the Slaves, when there was a perfon fpecially ap¬ 
pointed for that purpofe on the part of the King ? 

Nothing is more common than for people in a fubaltern fitua- 
tion in all countries to exceed their power ; but 1 know the thing 
exifts, becaufe I have feen it. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 


Luna, 31 0 die Mali 1790 . 

H ENRY HEW DALRYMPLE, Efquire, called in; 

and further examined. 

You have faid, your eftate is not at prefent under cultivation ; 
ihight you not have obtained the means of putting that eftate in 
cultivation if you had approved of them ? 

I might have obtained the means of putting the eftate in cul¬ 
tivation, as I might have had Slaves from the houfe of Backhoufe 
and Tarleton in Grenada, but having had an opportunity, when on 
the Coaft of Africa, of knowing how happy the Negroes are in 
their own country, and knowing the unjuftifiable means by which 
they are made Slaves there, their cruel ufage on board of fhip, and 
the fevere ufage in the Weft Indies, I could not, confidently with 

1 r&f 

C 32 1 ] 

my ideas of what was right, purchafe any Slaves, particularly a; 

I did not intend to remain upon the plantation my e . 

Have you ever feen difeafed or difabled feamen lying about the 

rorts in the Weft Indies ? . . • r 

r I have feen many in the town of St. Ceorg^ and enquiring o 

themfelves, 1 found that they had belonged to Guinea flups which 
had left them there. 

From vour knowledge of the Ifland of Grenada, do you think 
that any'planter would be defirous of interfering very aftively to 
remedy the fmaller abufes praftifed by White people upon their 

Negroes ? 

I cannot fay. 

What was Mr. Bruce’s method of preventing the tetanus ? 

I do not know Mr. Bruce’s method, but he allured me that it 
was fo efficacious, that from the time he had adopted it (which I 
think was two years before he mentioned it to me) he had 
not loft any, or at lead but very few children (I think he faid 
one or two), though during that time many had been born upon his 


Had not you thecuriofity to enquire into his method ? 

I did enquire, and he mentioned the method to me, but I do 
not recoiled it diffidently to be able to give an accurate account 
of it to the Committee; but I think that part of the method was, 
by giving the women, immediately before the labour, a large airy 


After this difeovery, did Mr. Bruce keep up the numbers upon 
liis eftate ? 

He told me, that from the time of this difeovery, though many 
children were born upon his eftate, he loft very few, I think on y 
one or two, he faid. 

In how many years ? , „ 

I think in two years; but I cannot be pofitive as to the number 

of years. 

Do you mean to fay, that the Slaves in Grenada are ill ufed? 

X do not pretend to fay that they are all ill ufed; but from 
what I myfelf have feen and heard, I believe that bad ufage is 
too general; 1 believe and know that there are people in Grenada 

[ 3 22 ] 

who treat their Slaves well; but I believe it is not the general 

From the extent of your travels in Africa, as mentioned in a 
former part of your evidence, do you think yourfelf warranted to 
Jpeak of the happy fate of the Negroes in Africa ? 

I only pretend to fpeak pofttively to that part of the Coaft which 
I myfelf have feen. 

Do you apprehend that that extent along the Coaft amounts to 
forty miles ? 

I fhould apprehend not to more; perhaps not fo much. 

Did you purchafe the plantation of which you have juft been 
fpeaking, or did it come to you by inheritance or devife ? 

I purchafed the plantation from Mr. Townfhend, the treafurer 
of Grenada, who was truftee of my father’s eftate. 

In what parifh does it lie ? 

1 think in the parifh of Saint David. 

How many miles from Saint George’s town ? 

I believe about feven or eight. 

Was any part of it ever cultivated in canes, or if not, in what 
elfe was it ufually cultivated ? 

No part of it, I believe, ever was cultivated in canes; it was 
cultivated in cocoa and provifions. 

How many acres does it confift of ? 

256, more or lefs. 

In what is it cultivated at prefent P 

It is not at prefent in a ftate of cultivation. 

Were there ever any Slaves, and how many, attached to it, or 
employed upon it ? 

I oelieve there were Slaves attached to it when in cultivation 1 
but I cannot fay how many. 

Is the foil adapted to the growth and produce of the fugar cane ? 

The foil is very good, but the fituation is rather too high for 
the cultivation of canes. 


[ 3 2 3 3 

Are there any Slaves now belonging to it, and how many ? 

There are none belonging to it. 

How many would it require to cultivate it for fuch produce as 
from the foil and fituation it is adapted to ? 

I cannot pretend to fay. 

Are there any fugar works or other buildings upon it, and of 
what fort ? 

There are no works or buildings upon it. 

Is this the plantation which, in a former part of your evidence, 
you faid was, with the Slaves belonging to it, in the pofTeltion of a 
mortgagee ? 

No, it is not. 

Are you now the owner of that eftate which you faid belonged to 
yonr father, and was in the poflfcftion of a mortgagee, and for which 
reafon, you laid, you could give no account of the feeding and 
cloathing of the Negroes ? 

I do not confider myfelf as owner of the eflate, but a part of my 
family have a right upon the eftate, and I have referved for my- 
felf and family a right to Call the mortgagee in poflefiion to ac- 

Are you owner of any other property in Grenada beGdes what 
you have ftated? 

I am not. 

In your feveral converfations with the prefent Chief Juftice of 
Grenada, touching the perfonal protection of Slaves, do you recoi¬ 
led his ever mentioning to you any inftance of a White man s hav¬ 
ing been convicted by due courfe of law there, and hanged for the 
murder of a Slave, after the ifland became under the Birtifh civil 
government ? 

I have had convention with the Chief Juftice upon this fubjeCt, 
and I do recoiled his mentioning an inftance of a White man being 
brought to trial, and being hanged for the murder of a Slave ; he 
faid,"that he was of opinion, that if this man had been a man of 
good charader, or had had friends or money to pay for the Slave he 
had murdered, that it was probable that he would not have been 
brought to a trial; he defcribed this man as a native of Barbadoes, 
a man of very bad charader in his own ifland, which on that ac¬ 
count he had been obliged to leave K his employment in Grenada was 

4 0 that 

[ 3 24 ] 

that of a bailiff’s follower, and he was remarkable for executing 
his office with rigour on this account, as well as his general bad 
charadter, he was particularly obnoxious to the inhabitants of the 
town of St. George. 

Did you underftand from the Chief Juftice, whether the man 
was defended by counfel or not ? 

I underftood that he was defended by counfel. 

Did the Chief Juftice refide at Grenada at the time of that tranf- 
adtion, as you underftood ? 

I do not know. 

Was you ever in the ifland of Saint Vincent’s-? 

I have. 

Was you at Calliaqua ? 

I was. 

Did you fee and converfe with any of the Caribbs at Saint 
Vincent’s ? 

. I converfed with the Yellow Caribbs only; but I have feen the 
Black Caribbs. 

Do the Black Caribbs appear to be originally of the fame race of 
people as the .Negro Slaves ? 

I apprehend the Black Caribbs to be a mixture between the 
Yellow Caribbs and fome Negroes that have been caft away on the 
Ifland. 3 

Do their complexion and features approach nearer to the Yellow 
Caribb, or to the Negro ? 

Their complexion and features approach nearer to the Negroes 
than to the Yellow Caribbs. 

Did the Black Caribbs which you faw have any cloathing, and 
what was that cloathing ? 

They had only a clout or girdle about their middles; they had 
no other cloathing. 

Had they fliocs or landals, or any thing to guard their feet ? 

Thofe that I faw had no fhoes. 

Did any of thofe Caribbs that you faw carry arms ? 

As far as I recolledt, all of them were armed with cutlafles. 


[ 325 1 

Did you fee any Black Caribbs in their way to the markets of the 
Ifland ? 

I have feen them in the market of Kingfton, felling tobacco, and 
other articles. 

Who were the bearers of thofe articles to market, the men or the 
women ? 

The women. 

You mentioned having converfed with fome Yellow Caribbs, 
are they cloathed any further than thofe Black Caribbs you have 
mentioned ? 

Thofe that I faw were not. 

Was you at their cabins within the country ? 

I was not j 1 only faw them at Kingfton. 

Are you acquainted with the food and way of living of thofe 
Caribbs, from that converfation ? 

1 am not. 

Whether the fugar eftates that are cultivated in St. Vincent’s, 
which you faw, were not for the mofl part bordering on the fea- 
. coaft: ? 

The greater part of them certainly are. 

How are the Negroes cloathed in Africa ? 

In thofe parts of Africa where I have been, the Negroes ufe very 
little cloathing.—They have a great deal of cloathing fometimes, but 
that is only for ceremony. 

Do you recollect the name of the White man who was hanged for 
murder ? 

He was called, I think, Bacchus Prefton. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mart is, i° die Junii 1790 . 

Jvliddleham, in Yorkihire, called in 3 and examined. 

6 Were 

[ 3*6 ] 

Were you ever in the Weft Indies ? 

Yes; I was born in Barbadoes, 2nd refided there lome years in my 
youth, and two years after I was of age, from the year 1768 to the 
year 1770, during which time I was in holy orders. 

Were you abfent from Barbadoes for any confiderable time previ¬ 
ous to the period laft mentioned ? 

I was abfent at fchool in England four years, and at the uni- 
verilty of Oxford fix years, with an interval between the two 
periods of the fchool and the univerfity of four years, during 
which time I was under the tuition of an uncle in the ifland of 

Duiing your refidence in Barbadoes, had you any opportunities 
of judging of the fituations of the field as well as of the houfe 
Slaves ? 

Yes; for my uncle, with whom I refided four years, poflefled a 
fugar eftate of his own, upon which he lived, and feveial of niy 
friends and relations were concerned in eftates, whom I vifited; 
and in my laft refidence of two years I refided upon a very large 
eftate, and obferved the management of that as well as of the other 
lurroundine eftates. 

What appeared to you to be the fituation of the Slaves in 
general, in rdpedt of food, and other neceffaries and couifoits of 
life ? 

I do not think I could comprehend their condition under any one 
general defcription that would equally fuit all whom I obferved; 
iome appeared to be well fed and taken care of both in ficknefs and 
in health; others again to be much negledted and feverely tieated; 
the imprefiion that was made upon my mind by the latter occa- 
fioned my faying to a perfon concerned largely in the management 
of Negrces, that Providence would raife up a deliverer to that 
people. In order to (hew that this is not a fentiment taken up at 
the moment, I believe, was necefiary, I could mention the 
very words I ufed on that occafion, of which I was lately reminded 
by the perfon to whom I ufed them the words were, “ This 
people will find a Mofes.” 

Was it, in ycur opinion, generally underftood in ycur time, in 
the ifland of Barbadoes, that Slaves were by the laws fecured in the 
enjoyment of fufficient food and other comforts, and protected from 
perfonal ill ufage ? 

I never 

[ 3-7 ] 

I never read the laws of Barbadoes, but I underftood from ge¬ 
neral converfation on the fubje£t, that the Slaves were under nd 
protedfion ; but that in cafes of murder the owner, if the mur¬ 
derer, was by the laws punilhable by fine but if the murderer 
was not the owner, the value of the Negro was paid to the owner, 
and the faid fine paid into the Exchequer, at the fuit of the Attor¬ 
ney General. I do not recollect an inftance of wilful murder by 
any owner, but I recollect to have been informed, by correfpon- 
dence with a Weft India gentleman, that a perfon of the name of 
Beaumont Lafhley did wilfully, in pafiing the ftreets, draw his 
fword and kdl a new Negro, whom he thought to be laughing at 
him while he himlelf was intoxicated. I underftood he paid the 
price of the Negro, but I did not learn that any other punifhment 
was inflidted. 

In what year did this tranfadfion pafs of which you have laft 
Ipoken ? 

1 did not enquire, but believe it has happened fince I left the 

Did your correfpondent mention it as a circumftance which had 
fallen within his own perfonal knowledge ? 

My correfpondent lived in the country at a diftance from Bridge 
Town, where the event occurred; but he (poke of it as a matter 
of certainty, and well known. 

Is this correfpondent a man on whofe information you can en¬ 
tirely rely ? 

Indeed I am perfuaded I can. 

Do you apprehend, that if Slaves who did not receive fufficient 
food, or who we e ill ufed by their maftevs, had applied to the 
magiftrate, they could have obtained legal redrefs, or was it ge¬ 
nerally underftood that they had any right to it? 

I never underftood that they could obtain legal redrefs in thole 
inftances, nor did I ever hear of fuch redrefs being applied for; 
what legal provifion there is I cannot undertake to lay. 

Though the Slaves, you fay, were not generally confi lered as 
being under legal protedion in the particulars before bated, yet 
was not the m fter’s feme of intereft in general fufficient to fecure 
them from ill ufage, and in the enjoyment of fufficient food, 

4 P 

I knew 

[ 328 ] 

I knew many inftances in which the fenfe of intereft did not 

Do you recolledt any of thefe inftances ? 

I recolledt the inftance of one M'Mahon, whofe feverity, it was 
generally faid, had deftroyed more Negroes than the value of the 
additional crops produced by their very fevere labour; fo that al¬ 
though in eight years he paid off a confiderable debt with which 
his eftate was encumbered, yet it was reckoned that he deftroyed 
more Negroes than the amount of the debt.—I do alfo recoiled!: 
anothi r inftance or tw*o in which the Negrces were reduced to a 
general ftate of debility and difeontent from the want of proper 
fupplies of food and neceflary comforts, while they were urged to 
their accuftomed Lbour j fo that it was obferved, that the manager 
of a particular eftate “ for a long cane would produce a dead 
“ Negro.” Thole I mention as the identical words which [ heard. 
In other cafes humanity equally joined with a fenfe of intereft in 
making a good provifion for the Negroes. I could mention fe- 
veral inftances, in particular that of Dr. Mapp, whofe eftate I faw 
in the moft fburilhing condition poffible, both as to the number 
of Negroes, from their natural increafe, and the fuccefs of his 

Did you or did you not lee reafon to believe that the treat¬ 
ment of the Slaves, and their lituation, greatly depended on the 
difpofition of the mafter or manager ? 

I conceived it wholly to depend upon the difpofition of the per- 
fon who had the direction of them. I knew an eftate of Sir 
Hanfon Berney, where I was much in my youth, while it was 
under the direction of his brother, Mr. Berney, whofe manage¬ 
ment of the Negroes was humane and judicious, and conducted 
without any punilhment that I ever obferved, while the manage¬ 
ment of the eftate was alfo equally judicious and produdtive of 
good to the owner ; and I have often heard a relation of mine, 
who had the care of feveral large elhtes, declare that he would 
willingly fubmit to have the power of punilhment taken from 
him, if he might allow fufficient rewards for good behaviour and 
labour; he conducted one eftate in particular that I know for 
the fpace of two years, during which I vifited him almoft 
daily, withrut any inftance of punilhment that I knew of; and 
yet he declared to me, that upon his taking the management of 
that eftate there was hardly a place on the backs of the labouring 
Negroes free fom the marks of the lalh, though all that feverity 
did not prove fuccefsful to the owner in point of crops. 


[ 3 2 9 3 

Was any effect on the Slaves fituation produced by the mailer’s 
being in embarrafled circumflances ? 

The cffett was obvious: ill, as to the prefling his Slaves to 
greater exertions, that he might be fpared the hiring of afiiftants 
in holing, in order to produce larger crops, and becaufe he had 
not always credit with the town agent to procure topples; or, if 
he had credit, toch topplies coming dear, he was more fparing in 
ifiuing them out} or, if he was ever fo defirous of granting liberal 
fupplies, yet the difficulty of obtaining them in bad weather, 
when he had no (lore laid in before-hand, muft necefiarily abridge 
his allowance to his Negroes. Under thofe difficulties, I have 
known humane perfbns to embarrafled allow their Negroes mo- 
lafles to exchange with Negroes of other eftates for corn, but the 
"exchange was commonly to the difadvantage of the Negro lb cir- 
cumftanced; but in other cafes of inhuman mailers, I have reafon 
to believe this provifion was neglected, and the Negroes for a w>.ek 
or two to have gone without any allowance of a fubftitu.e till the 
fupplies arrived; this was confirmed to me by the manager of a 
gentleman who was fo circumltanced. 

Can you of your own knowledge fay that the Slaves were for 
any time without fupplies in this lalt inltance ? 

I can fay that I have the greatell reafon to believe it. 

What part of the information was derived from the manager ? 

That part chiefly which refpefts the lengih of time they were 
without fupplies; and he alio informed me, that the fame^perfon, 
as well as feveral others, either abridged or withheld, in crop 
time, the Hated allowance that they gave at other times. 

What was generally the mode of punifhing Slaves in Bar- 
badoes ? 

I believe the ufual inftruments of punilhment were the thong 
whip, chains on the legs, irons on the neck, and confinement to 
what was called the dungeon; I comprehend in that all that I 
have ever feen, except in cafes of fome enormous crime, when 
the punifhment was gibbeting alive in chains j I never heard but 
of two inftances of the latter; indeed thofe I faw at a diftance 
from my father’s window when I was a boy} for what fpecific 
crime I cannot fay, as I was then young. 

Is whipping fo inflicted as to be a fevere punifhment ? 

Undoubtedly fo. 



[ 33° ] 

Do the marks of whipping long continue vifible? 

I believe in fome inftances they remain for life, as I have feen 
Negroes carrying them very vifibly to old age; the punifhment is 
with a thong whip, which cuts deep into the flefh. 

Do the Slaves work in the fields under a driver ? 

Always, I believe; I never knew the contrary. 

What is his inftrument of correction? 

A thong whip plaited. 

Is it the fame as what you juft before alluded to? 

I believe generally the fame. 

Were the rites of marriage in the way they fubfifted among 
the Negroes fufficiently protected by law or cuftom ? 

By neither in the fmalleft degree; I have faid that I never 
read the laws of Barbadoes, therefore I cannot fay that there is no 
fuch law there, but I never heard of any fuch. 

Was the chaftity of the Negro women liable to invafion on the 
part of the manager, or other White perfons in particular? 

I believe entirely fo. 

What opinion have you formed of the natural capacity and 
difpofition of the Negroes ? 

Juft the fame as I have of the natural capacity and difpofition 
of the Whites; I ground my opinion upon obfervation in many 
inftances ; my father gave me as a female fervant a Negro woman 
whom he had purchafed from a Slave (hip to attend my filler; 
(he was apparently at firft as dull and fullen as any Negro I ever 
faw, but upon inftruCtion fhe became quite the reverfe, and of 
her own accord defired to be made a ChiiftLn; I employed her 
as a domeftic fervant afterwards in America, where her fidelity to 
her hufband, and good behaviour in all refpcCts, fhewed that fhe 
poflefled both a good undcrftanding and the beft difpofition; I 
ohfcrved in many Negr« es the fame improvement where equal 
care was taken of them, which was not uncommonly the cafe in 
the northern prov nces of America; I remember a Phillis Wheat- 
ley in Bofton, an African imported Slave, who in lefs than three 
years learned the Engf fh language, and wrote elegant Englifh 
verle, which has been publifhed ; I have known repeated inftances 
of their ingenuity; among others I have feen an elegant chair, 
which a Negro of Jamaica carved with a knife o:ily, and many 


[ ip ] 

other inftances I have known of their ability to cultivate arts and 

Do they feem readily fufceptible of religious improvement ? 

The difpofition of the Negroes is in general affectionate, where 
well treated, which I conceive would eufily lead to piety if they 
were in the way of improvement; feveral field and other Negroes, 
before I left the ifiand of Barbadoes, who had attended the 
church, expreffed to me their defire of becoming Chriftians; and in 
the northern provinces of America I have known many of them 
Chriftians, and to behave in a manner not unbecoming their pro- 
feffion; but I did not know many intruded or baptized in 


In what eftimation was the race of Negroes generally held by 
the Whites, according to your obfervation ? 

Perfons of principle and education regarded them as unfortu¬ 
nate men entitled to compaflion and g;od treatment; but the 
bulk of the Whites confidered them as an inferior fpecies ot 
beings, and therefore not entitled to the fame confideration. 

1 Did you know any inftance of an African Slave in the Weft 

Indies who had been of fuperior condition in his own country ? 

My father had a boy, who alleged that he was the fon of a 
prince in Africa, and taken from thence, as I recoiled, forcibly; 
it was when I was a boy tnyfelf, and he was placed to attend me, 

I afterwards knew a Negro woman, a Slave, in the fame houfe 
where I refided, who alleged that her father was a king in 
Africa, and as fhe could find none her equals in Barbadoes, fhe 
would neither marry, eat with, or converfe with any of the other 
Negroes; this her miftrefs affured me had been the cafe for 
twenty years. 

Is it common for the Slaves to rob the provifion grounds of the 
neighbouring plantations ? 

f apprehend it frequently happened; and that watchmen were 
therefore fet to guard them with weapons of offence. 

Was it often neceffary for them to make ufe of thefe wea- 

P °How often I cannot fay; but I have heard of their being ufed, 
and Negroes brought home wounded. 

I What days of relaxation from labour were allowed to the 

Ne S roeS ? 4 ^ Some 

£ 33 2 ] 

Some perfons allowed their Negroes the whole of Sunday, a 
day or two at Chriftmas, a day after Fafter, Afh-Wednefilay, and 
Good-Friday, and I believe the day after Whit-Sunday, and 
fometimes a Saturday afternoon during the time of holing ; 
others again did not allow fo much vacation from labour, re¬ 
quiring on Sundays horfe meat (which is picked grafs or corn) to 
be gathered twice in the day, morning and evening, for the cat¬ 
tle, and often during the crop, protracting till late on Saturday 
night the boiling of fugarj in one inftance I recollect it to 
have been protracted till fun-rife on Sunday morning, and the 
care afterwards of fetting up the fugar pots on jars would ne- 
ceflarily require fbveral hours. 

Had the Slaves any other day than Sunday, commonly, for the 
cultivation of their own grounds ? 

No other, I apprehend, than what was fpecified above. 

What did you underftand in general to be the criterion of a 
manager’s merit ? 

I apprehend in general the production of large crops. 

Do you think the Field Negroes frequently poflefs property 
which may be called confiderable for perfons in their fituation ? 

I cannot think fo by any means, becaufe the quantum of ground 
allowed them for provifions did not admit of their raifing°much 
to fell, and of their allowance I do not conceive they could 
fpare any to fell. I have known Field Negroes to poflefs a pig, 
and two or three fowls; if they have an addition of a few plan¬ 
tain trees, thefe may procure fome little matter to fupply knives, 
iron pots, and fuch other conveniences as the mafter does not allow. 

Did you obferve any marks of opulence among them, fuch, 
for inftance, as their giving expenfive treats or balls? 

The utmoft I ever heard of in the way of amufement was 
fometimes when a Negro took a wife, then he has provided a pi» 
for the entertainment of his friends; I never underftood the 
dances were attended with treats; but as I never was prefent at 
one of them, I cannot abfblutely fay that no entertainment was 
given j I believe the chief entertainment confifted in that which 
they called muftc; and I think, if their entertainments had been 
expenfive, I fliould have heard of them. The principal feafts they 
ever give, as I underftand, are after the funerals of their friends, 
when they fcatter fome provifions on the grave, and eat the reft 
themfelves, with a view, as I underftood, of holding communion 
with the dead. 



[ 333 ] 

Are there ever any instances of Slaves deftroying themfclves ? 

I never recoiled* any of the Creole Negroes deftroying them- 
felves; but I remember to have heard of five or fix inftances of 
African Negroes, immediately after they were purchafed. 

What was the character and conduct of Free Negroes, fo far as 
fell under your obfervation ? 

I knew very few; one of them was wife to a Mulatto Slave 
upon Sir Hanfon Berney’s eftate, who was very induftrious in the 
care of her family, and in railing poultry to fell, with the profits 
of which fhe paid the expences of her children’s fchooling and 
cloaths } (he was encouraged to do that, knowing her children 
would be free; they were baptized, and the whole family fo well 
behaved, that in four years of my knowing them, I never heard 
any mifbehaviour attributed to them ; the only inftance of another 
free Negro whom I can fpecify, was Joe Rachel, a Black merchant 
m Bridge Town, who had large and extenfive concerns, and was 
fo much efteemed for his honefty, that he was commonly admitted 
to the company and converfation of merchants and planters* 

Was there any thing peculiar in the fituation or circumft.inces 
of the hi.iband of the female freed Negro whom you juft men¬ 
tioned? J 

He ferved in feveral capacities on the eftate, and was very fkil- 
ful in the care of the fick, and remarkable for his honefty and fo- 
briety j I think alfo he was a Chriftian. 

Do you know any thing relpedling his property ? 

He himfelf met with much encouragement, reward, and in¬ 
dulgence ; by which, and the care of his wife together, he was 
reputed to have amaffed the fum of £.100 fterling, which he 
ottered for his freedom, but it was refufed; he never ferved as a 
field Negro, but always in fome higher department on the plan¬ 
tation ; his matter thought him fo valuable, that he would not 
part with him at any price, but gave him all the indulgence that 
he could as a Slave ; all that refpedts his behaviour, and that of 
his wife, I know from my own obfervation ; as to the fum he 
had faved, I have been only informed by others. 

Was the fituation of domeftic Slaves commonly as comfort¬ 
able as that of the correfpondent rank of people in this coun¬ 
try ? 

By no means; (it is preferable to that of the Field Negro;) he 
was liable to corporal punifhment, nor had he the fame indulgence 
as domeftics in this country'. 


[ 334 1 

Was there any particular time and perfon when and by whom 
domeftic Slaves were commonly corrected P 

The driver commonly corrected them in the country, and a 
man was employed weekly in town, who went from houfe to 
houfe for that purpofe. 

By what name was he commonly known ? 

I remember to have heard that the Negroes in the Town were 
very much afraid of one Murphy, who was called the Jumper. 

Did you underftand that the term “ Jumper” was commonly 
applied to a perfon whofe profeffion was that of whipping the 
Negroes ? 

I underftood it was applied to his calling. 

Do you think the lituation of the generality of Field Slaves can 
bear a comparifon with that of the clafs of labourers in this 
country ? 

1 do not think fo, for the following reafons:—Fir/ 1 , becaufe 
the tropical heats are fo much more fevere, and are little varied 
by any change of feafon; and becaufe the intermifiions from la¬ 
bour are not fo frequent as in England, and the food lefs fob- 1 

ilantial ; and alfo, becaufe they are perpetually fobjedt, not only 
to arbitrary puni/hment from the chief overfeer, but’ from the 
book-keepers and drivers, who follow them conftantly at their 
work with the la/h, and fuddenly correfi, before an excufe can be 
heard, and often vent their own refentments under the plea of 
puni/hing for a negleft of work. 

Do White people ever labour in the open air in the Ifland of 
Barbadoes ? 

Thofe who are called tenant?, being men who ferve in the 
militia for a fmall allotment of land, and perfons in fimilar 
circumftances as to the quantity of land they occupy, do com¬ 
monly work in their grounds with their Negroes, if they have 
any, or el/e cultivate the whole with their own labour j that 
ground however is commonly in provi/ions, not in canes. 

Are there any White men in the Ifland of Barbadoes who live 
by the exercife of handicraft trades ? 

Yes; a good number; carpenters, joiners, ma/ons, copper- 
fmith>, blackfmiths, /hoemakers, taylors, and others; and alfo, 
fome of the poorer Whites /pin cotton for the lamps in the 

[ 335 ] 

boiling houfes ; Whites are alfo employed in the coafting veflels, 
and as fishermen. 

Did you know, during your refidence at Barbadoes, any 
inftances of docks of Slaves being kept up by the births only ? 

I underflood from the fon of Dr. Mapp, that the flock of 
Negroes on the eflate to which he had juft fucceeded had been 
more than kept up, and that there was a redundance fufficient to 
dock, or nearly to flock, another eflate. I could mention, I 
think, another inftance of Slaves that have come within my own 
obfervation, the property of the Reverend Mr. Carter, who in- 
creafed confidefably j they cultivated his glebe, and he annually 
planted canes, which were manufactured into fugar at an adjoin¬ 
ing eftate ; I have heard alfo of feveral other inftances; my brother 
informed me, that his Negroes had doubled their number, by the 
natural increafe, in the fpace of 20 years, and I believe they were 
generally employed in the common field bufinefs, as other Negroes 
are. 1 have heard that feveral other eftates alfo of perfons known 
to me have kept up their flocks by the natural increafe without 

Have you reafon to believe that plantations being under different 
managers has been attended with any confiderable effect as to the 
number of Slaves reared on the eftate ? 

I cannot fpeak from my own experience, becaufe I did not 
refide long enough on the ifland to form any fuch comparifon; 
but I have underftood fo repeatedly in converfations with judicious 

Did you ever know any inftances of Guinea failors being left in 
the Ifland of Barbadoes, in a deftitute and forlorn condition ? 

I remember to have feen two who were lame, and begging in 
the country at the hnule of a perfon who had relieved many fuch, 
by drawing out the Guinea worm, and healing the fores they had 
contracted in that fervice. 

Was there any apparent difference between African and Creole 
Negroes in refpeCt of their happinefs ? 

1 cannot lay what was the cafe with the Africans when they 
had been long upon the Ifland, becaufe my own refidence was 
but of a few years continuance ; but I remember both to have 
feen and to have heard of others who were dejeCted and ema¬ 
ciated, and incapable of work at their fiift coming, fo as even to 
refill aud flight all attempts to confole them, and to adminifter 

4 R nourifhment 

[ 33 6 ] 

nourilhment to them; but what number were of that defcnption 
I really cannot fay, as I had not an opportunity of feeing many 
my fell. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mercurii , 2 ° die Junii 1790 . 

called in; and further examined. 

When you was in Barbadoes, did you ever fee Negroes branded 
in their faces, or other parts of their bodies, with marks ? 

I never faw the ad of branding; I have feen fome marks, but 
how they aroie I do not diftindly remember, nor can I fay in 
how many inftances; I do not apprehend they were many. 

Have you ever heard with what inftrument thofe marks were 
made, and for what purpofe ? 

I do not recoiled to have heard with what inftrument, nor do 
I diftindly remember for what purpofe. 

Can you recoiled whether thofe marks that you have feen 
were letters, or what other kind of marks? 

It floats in my memory that there were fuch marks, but it be- 
in* 20 years ago I cannot diftindly fay of what nature they were j 
whether they were made in Africa, on board of (hip, or in what 
place they were made. 

Have you ever heard that on fome parts of the coaft of Africa 
tl-ere is a tribe or nation of Negroes naturally prone to fuicide in 

their own country ? . 

I never heard that circumftance: the inftances I alluded to in 
my evidence yefterday were of five, I think, who deftroyed tbem- 
fclves the day after they were purchafed ; I remember to have 
heard of one other inftance of an African Slave who deftroyed 
himfelf fome time after he was purchafed, but I believe from 
dejedion, and certainly not from ill-treatment, lor I know that 



[ 337 ] 

he was very well treated; thofe are all the inftances I know, or have 
heard of. 

Did you underftand that the pecuniary punilhments in the cate ol 
the murder of a Slave, either by the owner or other perton, were 
topTdt; an aft of the atebly of the iflanJ of Barbate, or by 

W “ted whether by an a* of the afletrtbly or by what 
other law ; I Ihould fuppofe it to have been by an ad of the ifland, 
becaufe the laws of this country inflid a different punifliment for 


If it was by an ad of the affembly of the ifland, do you appre¬ 
hend that if that law had not been confirmed by the King m coun¬ 
cil fiich a law would have remained upon the ftatute book ot the 
ifland, or have been the legal meafure of pumfhment for fuch an 

nee ? . * » • • 

When a law is paffed in the ifland, I apprehend it is imme¬ 
diately fint to be prefented to the King in council, and is valid, un- 
lefs negatived within three years, without any diftind approbation 
of the law being expreffed. 

Is not the royal filence in fuch a cafe then a virtual affent to fuch 

I apprehend the general maxim, of filence gives confent, takes 
place in this inftance. 

When did you receive the information from your correfpondent 
in Barbadoes refpeding the murder of a Negro by Beaumont 

La | cannot fpecify the month exadly, but I believe it was about 
lafl Chriftmas two years. 

Are there any other matters ftated by you in yodffe examination, 
as not to have fallen under your own perfonal obfervation and 
knowledge, of which you have received information within the laft 
mentioned Vpace of time, or when were you fo informed of thole 

^ Many of thofe particulars I had in converfation, in the ifland of 
Barbadoes, with my father and my brother, who refided near me; 
and who at different times had the care of Slaves of their own 
and of other perfons to the amount of between l and Q,oco, and 
who knew the ftate of the whole ifland of Barbadoes > fome par¬ 
tners had been communicated to me by letters} rood of my 


t 338 ] 

information that I did not receive from my father and brother in 
fuch converfations has been received by letters within the above- 
mentioned period; the writer being then in England, I have 
rot correfponded with him fince upon that fubjebt within that 

Was your correfpondence by letters upon this fubje£t, with one 
or more perfons ? 

With one perfon chiefly j I have had occaflon to converfe, and 
to correfpond with another gentleman, who has confldeiable pro¬ 
perty in the ifland of Barbadoes, and is a gentleman of fome 

Does any part of your evidence confift of information received by 
you in converfation with the laft-mentioned gentleman? 

I do not think that in any of the evidence I have given I adverted 
to any information derived from him. 

Is that gentleman a proprietor of eftates and Slaves in the ifland 
of Barbadoes ? 

Yesj of value. 

Has he long refided in this country? 

I believe he has been abfent five years from Barbadoes $ he has 
been in both countries within the laft ten years. 

Has the fyftem of management upon his plantation, in his abfence 
from Barbadoes, been prejudicial to his Slaves in point of treat¬ 
ment and neceflary provifion ? 

I believe not in the fmalleft degree, as I have heard both from 
himfelf and others, difinterefted perlons. 4 

Was the ir^ftance you have mentioned of M‘Mahon’s feverity 
to his Negroes quoted to you as an objedt of deteftation, or for 
imitation, in Barbadoes? 

At the time 1 hrft heard it I was a minor, and lived with my uncle 
and father ; as near as I can recolledt, it was about the year 1760; 
I lived then chiefly with my uncle, viflting often my father, who 
lived in M‘Mahon’s neighbourhood, from whom I have often heard 
expreffions of deteftation of M'Mahon’s condudt j I alfo heard the 
fame mentioned fome time after, when I was in orders, at a fu¬ 
neral from the houfe which he had poflefled, and it was then men¬ 
tioned with difapprobation alfo. 


[ 339 1 

Was the information you received within the two laft years by 
letter, the refult of voluntary communication by the writer, or of 
queftions propounded by you ? 

The information was conveyed in confequence of my having lent 
to him a letter I had publilhed upon the Slave Trade, which letter 
I had at firft written and printed without his knowledge, or any 
communication with him upon the fubjedt. 

Did you ever fee a Slave under the ad! of punilhment ? 

I have fometimes, but having lived much with my father and 
uncle, who were humane men, I do not recoiled! at prefent more 
than one inftance of corredtion by either of them, and that was for a 
very conliderable felony. Upon my laft relidence on the ifland, in 
prieft’s orders, I endeavoured to fee as little as 1 could of the punilh¬ 
ment of the Slaves; in feveral inftances they unavoidably obtruded 
themfelves upon my notice; 1 recolledt the wearing of irons both 
about the feet and neck, and in particular one tremendous punilh¬ 
ment by the lalh, which I heard adminiftered, but did not fee; 
the punilhment was for running away, and conlifted of fixty lalhes 
on the breech with a thick whip; a perfon in the fervice of the 
owner, who ordered that corredtion, informed me, that the owner 
firft maltreated the above-mentioned Slave, which compelled him 
to run away, and he was punilhed thus when taken; another per¬ 
fon, who faw the punilhment, allured me, that the whip had made 
incifions large enough for the finger to be laid in; afterwards the 
Slave was committed to the dungeon; this, I think, was the 
fevereft chaftifement I recoiled!, as a man. 

What was the fpecies of felony committed by your father’s 
Negro, and for which he was punilhed ? 

It was breaking open a ftorehoufe, and Healing from thence one 
pipe of wine. 

What was the nature and extent of punilhment he fuffered for 
that crime? 

To the belt of my rccolledtion (recolledting as well as I can) he 
received twenty-four lalhes, and not more. 

Do or do not Slaves in Barbadoes moft commonly receive the 
ftripes, With which they are whipped, upon the breech ? 

1 have faid before, that I endeavoured to fee as little of that mat¬ 
ter as I could ; but I have repeatedly feen very large wheals (the 
remains of lalhes) upon all parts of the back. 




[ 34o ] 

What is the general cuftom in that refpetft, as you have been 
informed, and verily believe ? 

I verily believe the blow upon fudden provocation to be with the 
whip upon the back, in formal punilhments upon the breech ; both 
Which 1 believe to take place. 

Do you know to whom belonged the wife of the Mulatto Slave 
on Sir Hanfon Berney’s eftate, before (he became a free woman ? 

I believe (he was born free. 

Have rot Slaves on plantations, who are employed in the more 
fkilful and confidential bufinefs of plantations, fuch as fugar boilers, 
diftillers, carpenters, and other handhraft bufincfs, (uch luitable 
encouragements and rewards from their matters as to enable them 
frequently to acquire confiderable property for ptople in their fta- 

I do not remember an inftance of any confiderable property 
acquired by any Negro beyond what I mentioned in my exami¬ 
nation of yefterday } the greateft was that p< fiHTed by Tom Per¬ 
ryman, the Mulatto, on Sir Hanfon Bernty’s eftate. I believe they 
have indulgences, but to what amount or extent I am no: able to 
fay. Upon further recolledtion, I remember a confidential Slave 
of the fame Sir Hanfon Berney, who was employed in carrying 
the rum of the eftate to market, and felling it, and in making bar¬ 
gains for fome of the fmaller l'upplies with the traders in town, 
living very comfoi tably upon the indulgence allowed him, but I 
never underftood what property he had acquired, or if he had ac¬ 
quired any. He had, I believe, alfo, a free Negro woman for his 

Do you mean to fay then, that thefe inftances of the eafe and 
comfort in which thefe fuperior Slaves of Sir Hanfon Berney lived, 
were peculiar to that plantation, and were not to be found on 
others in the iflar.d of Barbadoes ? 

I meant to fpeak as diie&ly to the queftion as I could; fpeaking 
to what I knew, and not to what I did not know; I do not how¬ 
ever fuppofe that my own want of larger experience is to criminate 
other gentlemen, many of whom I know to pofiefs principles of 
honour and humanity, though I could not fee the detail of their 

Do you, or do you not, then, from all you have obferved and 
have heard refpedting the management of plantations in Barba¬ 
does, believe, that fimilar inftances of encouragement with thofe 
3 on 

[ 34 1 ] 

on Sir Hanfon Berney’s plantation, to Negroes of the above de- 
fcription, are generally held forth in the fame manner upon other 
plantations ? 

All that I have obferved or heard on this fubjed does not entitle 
me to fay what is the encouragement given to the generality of Ne¬ 
groes of that defcription. 

Have you fufficient data whereon to give an opinion, whether 
the general treatment of Slaves by the proprietors of eftates in 
Barbadoes, when you were laft there (allowing for" inftances of 
partial and particular feverities and cruelties by individuals) was or 
was not humane and proper ? 

I do not underhand what is to be confidered as fufficient data j 
I can only allege, that the fentiment I then formed, and have 
ever fince poffeffed, was, that fetting afide on one hand particu¬ 
lar inftances of great feverity, and on the other hand particular 
ii fiances of great humanity, that treatment altogether humane 
and proper was not the lot of fuch as I had obferved or heard of. 

Had not Field Slaves, and particularly thofe on plantations in 
the vicinity of towns, the means of frequently felling to the in*, 
habitants of fuch towns, vegetables, poultry, pork, and other freffi 
meat, fruits, and green provender for their horfes and cattle; the 
returns for which they received to their own ufe? 

I have feen repeatedly the Negroes from various parts of the 
ifland, in Bridge Town, at their Negro market on Sundays, felling 
feveral different articles, of vegetables and poultry chiefly; fuch 
as keep pigs, brought to market that meat alfo; of other meat 
I believe but little, as they never keep the larger cattle; goats are 
much difconraged, on account of the young canes; pigs are alfo 
neceflarily confined, left they ffiould injure the plantations of canes. 
Whatever returns they obtain are uniformly, I believe, allowed to 

Where is your ufual place cf refidence ? 

I refide between my two livings, Middleham in Yorkffiire, and 
Stony Stanton in Leicefterfhire. 

In the parts where you live, what is the ufual weekly wages of 
a labouring peafant in winter and fummer P 

At my living in Leicefterfhire I recoiled to have heard two 
farmers lay, the one of them that he gave £. io a year and board 
to his waggoner; the other informed me, that he gave £.g a year 



[ 342 ] 

to his day labourer, with his board.—In the fame parifh, one day 
labourer in agriculture had 6r. per week, and a load of coals 
brought for him, free of expence of carriage, to his door from the 
pits, about 17 miles diftant; he found himfelf in all other mat¬ 
ters, except during harveft, when he was allowed provifions.— 
In Yorkfhire, I believe, labour is rather dearer. About Middle- 
ham, 1 have given 14*/. a day to feveral day labourers, to work in 
my garden, in the beginning of lpring, from between feven and 
eight in the morning to five in the afternoon. The hours of work¬ 
ing in harveft vary, but I believe lefs is not given to a day labouring 
man about us, unlefs found in provifions; and in time of harveft, 
net lefs wages, with provifions. 

What is the average wages per week allowed to labouring men 
in the farming bufinefs, who have no allowance for board, provi¬ 
fions, or other allowance, but who contraft to ferve the year 
through, without particularizing the feafons of their fervice ? 

As far as I can learn, in Leicefterfhire it is fix {hillings per 
week. I do not recolleft to have heard the average in York¬ 

* What is the kind of food on which fuch a labourer in Leicefter- 
fhire, and his wife and children, if he has any, fubfift, by the 
means of thofe wages only, out of harveft time ? 

The only labourers which I have feen at their meals, were fuch 
as were fed by the farmer. I really cannot fpecify exactly the 
diet of the others; but it is a cheefe country, and cheefe enters 
largely into their diet; they eat wheaten and rye bread—in fome 
inftances barley bread; and they make ufe of oatmeal, but in no 
great degree ; frefh butchers meat I have not known but on Sun¬ 
days, of which they commonly make broth; beans in fummer 
enter largely into their fare; their wives and children ufe bread 
larded with hogs-lard inftead of butter, and they ufe wheat meal fried 
with lard, fliced apples, and fmall pieces of bacon, if they have 
any, and potatoes ;—this is the general defeription I have heard in 
the parifh of fuch labourers. 

From your knowledge of the price of thofe articles of life in 
Leicefterfhire, which you have juft mentioned, is it your opi¬ 
nion that a labouring man of the defeription you have laft fpe- 
cified, with only fix {hillings per week, with a wife and only 
two fmall children, is able from his wages to furnilh himfelf 
with a fuflkient quantity of thofe necefiaries of life, and to 


[ 543 ] 

provide fufficie. t clothing for himfelf and family, and to dif- 
charge h s houfe-rent and other incidental expences? 

I do not know a labouring man who has only fix (hillings per 
week for himfelf and family, for the year round, without other 
aids;—thofe aids are, his wife’s labour in fpinning, knitting, 
and other work, by which I have known them to earn from 
three pence to fix pence per day; and alfo, gleanings of corn¬ 
fields, from whence confiderable relief has, to my 1c owledge, 
been obtained—in one infiance to the amount of feven bufhels in 
a harveft, befides the relief which he obtains during the harvefi, 
in a better and more fubftantial living. Such labourer commonly 
has a little bit of garden ground, and in many places, particularly 
in the adjoining parifh to mvfelf of Broughton Aftley, many of 
the day-labourers hire land, and keep a cow, and fome have the 
privilege of a common in many places. In my own parifh of 
Stony Stanton, the land is chiefly engrofled by great farmers, and 
the bulk of the labouring inhabitants are not employed in agri¬ 
culture, but in the manufacture of (lockings. 

Do you mean to fay, that all the labourers of the above de- 
feription enjoy the fame means of fupporting themfelves and fa¬ 
mily j and fuppofing that they have, that they can furnilh them¬ 
felves and families with the neceffary food, fuch as you have de¬ 
ferred, befides defraying the expence of houfe-rent, clothing, 
medical affiftance, and other incidental expences? 

All implies every one univerlally, without exception, to which 
untverfility my experience does i ot extend. 

Do you apprehend that a labouring man with fix (hillings per 
week, with the addition of his wife’s labour, producing from three 
pence to fix pence per day, having two or three fmall children 
who are not of an age to work, can maintain himfelf and fa¬ 
mily by thofe means alone, with a lufiicient quantity of fooJ 
and other neceflaries of life adapted to his fituation ? 

I conceive I have anfwered that queftion before, by faying, 

I do not know any labouring man confined to that income 

Do not you believe, from your general knowledge and infor¬ 
mation, that there are many poor families of the above dele no¬ 
tion in this kingdom, who have no greater means than thofe 
above fpecined for their fupport in the neceffary articles of 
life ? 

4 2* 

I prefume 

[ 344 ] 

1 prefume there may be ; I can inftance a widow left with 
two children, who never had fo much after her widowhood, 
and yet maintained thofe children without afliftance from the 
parifh, and brought them up to be induftrious members of the 
community, and parents of families ; 1 can inftance another family 
of the fame parifh, who have uniformly lived with comfort in 
the condition of a common day-labourer, and brought up a 
ufeful family; I have underftood and believe from all that I have 
heard and obl'erved, that an induftrious poor family, the father 
of which is fober, is capable of fubfifting himfelf and family 
as a day-labourer only; and of late fome prizes have been 
given away in Yorkfhire to day-labourers who have brought 
up large families with no other afliftance than the labour of 
the family. 

Of what number of children did thofe families you above al¬ 
lude to, who have been able to maintain themfelves by their la¬ 
bour, confift ; and what might be the amount, per week, which 
the father and mother, and the whole of the family fo able to 
work, were able to earn ? 

Of the laft-mentioned families which obtained the prizes in 
Yorkfhire, I am not able to fay any thing. The prize was ad¬ 
vertized as having been given away, as far as 1 recoiled!:, in the 
York Paper, to perfons of that defeription, and therefore I can 
only fpeak of it as a matter of fame and not of knowledge. In the 
inftance of the woman and children, the woman fpun worfted, 
and during my attendance upon her, when fhe was dying, as a 
miniftcr, fhe told me, that in order to keep her family from the 
parifh, fhe fat up to fpin through the whole of two or three 
nights in the week, in the other inftance of the day-labourer, 
I do not know fpecifically what addition might have been made 
to the labour of his family, who were grown up, and his wife 
dead, at the time I mention, but he brought up two fons to 
work in the flocking trade, one of whom, living with his father, 
now earns 9 s. per week ; the daughter is induftrious, and ap¬ 
pears coijftantly in very decent apparel; but the particular nature 
of her work, or the value of it, I do not know; in vifiting her 
father, when fick, I have feen her fometimes fpinning, fometimes 
knitting, and at other times nurfing her father. I might poflibly, 
upon reco'Ieftion, ftate other inftances, which do not imme¬ 
diately occur. 

Did the widow, whom you vifited in her laft illnefs, tell 


[ 345 ] 

you what might be the amount of her earnings or labour per 
week P 

I did not afk her, nor did I hear. She died foon after. 

Did you underftand and believe, that (lie received no charitable 
affidance towards fupporting her family, in aid of her own meri¬ 
torious exertions? 

During that period I was not minifter of the parifh, and I do 
not recolledt to have heard what was given, or whether any tiling 
was given her during that period ; 1 can only fay, that it is not a 
place where I found many charitable benefactions bellowed, the 
people being chiefly of the lower order. 

Are you a judge of what fhe was capable of earning per week by 
her labour in fpinning? 

What fhe was capable of earning by fuch extra exertions I am not 
able to fay; and the earnings are different, according to the differ¬ 
ence c f dexterity > but I have underftood that fix pence per day 
is the average earning. I am not acquainted enough with thofe 
matters to fpeak with abfolute accuracy. 

You have faid, that the impreflion made on your mind by the ap¬ 
pearance of .he Negroes in Barbadoes drew forth from you an ex- 
preflion to a perfon concerned in the management of Negroes, 
“ That that people would find a Mofes;” what did you mean by 
that expreflion ? 

By that expreflion, which I uttered as a believer in Divine Pro¬ 
vidence and Divine Revelation, and an enthufiaftic admirer of the 
conftitution of this country, and having oblerved from hiftory that 
there is no profit in unrighteoufnefs, and being taught by Divine 
Revelation, “ That God hath made of one blood all the nations of 
“ the earth, and that all men are brethren,’* I meant, that 
God was not an epicurean deity, idle in the heavens, but 
Would judge the nations of the earth, and in his own f*afon 
bring deliverance to the captive, and heal thofe that were broken 
in heart; and I hope that in this inftance I may be found a 

Is the Committee then to underftand from hence, that you 
mean by what you have laid, that the condition of Slavery was 
repugnant to the principles of the Chriftian Religion, as well as of 
the Mofaical Law ? 

I I am not here as a difputant. I have given the fentiments which 

I had at the time of uttering thofe words, which in my own appre- 
3 henfion 


[ 346 ] 

henfion I am not able to render clearer; I can only fay, they were 
fp much my fentiments, as to produce a change of habitation to my 
own difadvantage foon after.. ' 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Jovis , 3 0 die < Junii 1790. 

in j and further examined. 

Where Slaves in Barbadoes were under judicious and humane 
mafters, were they well fed, clothed, lodged, taken care of in fick- 
nefs as well as health, and perfonally treated with moderarion and' 
lenity with refped to punilhments ? 

As far as they fell under my obfervation they were. 

Under thefe circumftances then, exclulive of the idea of liberty, 
may not there be a reafonable companion drawn between their 
filiation, as to the enjovment of the comforts and neceflaries of life, 
and that of the labouring clafs of peafants in this country ? 

I confider liberty as the firft comfort in life, as well as an unalien¬ 
able right. I confider the want of it as leflening the comforts of 
life i and in the inltance I gave yefterday in the cafe of Tom Perry¬ 
man, Sir Hanfon Bemey’s Negro, I fliewed that it was a leflening 
of the comforts of his life, as being a fource of continual regret to 
himfelf. 1 confider it as cutting off the hope of bettering one’s 
condition, and therefore detrading from the comforts of life; and 
to fhew that this is not fpeculation, I can mention inftances 
within my own knoivle-dge, and fotne within my own parilh, of 
agricultural labourers railing into fruations that enabled them to 
marry well (that is to fay, with a fortune of £. 500), to pro¬ 
vide well for, and to educate their children at grammar and 

You are not afked as to the value of liberty, but allowing for 
the difference between a Free Man and a Slave, whethe" Negroes, 
who are not in general irom their fituations fo fufceptible of the 
fentimentof liberty as a free peafant in England, do not enjoy, 
under the circuinflances of their being humanely treated, what is 


[ 347 ] 

to them the comforts and neceffaries of life, in a due proportion 
with the labouring peafants of this country in that refpeft ? 

The queftion is grounded upon an hypothefis, which I do not 
allow, or believe to be true, viz. “ That they are not fo fufceptible 
** of the fentiment of liberty as a free peafant in England,” as the 
feveral rebellions to recover their liberty that have occurred among 
the Negroes, and efpecially two great rebellions mentioned by Long, 
in his Hiftory of Jamaica, would alone fufficiently prove; in which 
rebellions many thoufands of Negroes were engaged, and they were 
not fubdued without confiderable lofs to the ifland, and all the 
affiftance the king’s fleet and army could afford. I do further 
allege, tha- I have known Negroes extremelv defirous and fenfible 
of the privileges of freedom; which confederations prevent my 
allowing the hypcthefi?. , 

Snppofing the hvpothefis to be true, that liberty is a fentiment 
which every Englifhman feels, and which few Negroes feci in the 
fame extent, may not there then be a reafonable comparifon drawn 
between their condition and that of the peafants of this country, 
with refpecl to the particulars above fpecified ? 

When I faid in anfvver to the firft queftion, that Negroes under 
the defeription contained in the queftion were well treated, &c. I 
meant comparatively, but did not mean to inftitute a comparifon 
with the peafantry in this country, becaufe I faid yefterday and the 
day before, that I conceived the diet and other accommodations of 
the labouring peafantry, fuppofing them under the ciicumftance 9 
I mentioned, was more fubftantial than that of the Negroes, as far 
as I could generally obferve of them ; and what confirms me in 
this opinion is, the large fize, the health and long life of many 
whom I know of the labouring peafantry in the North Riding of 
Yorkfhire, near Middleham; many inllances have fallen that con¬ 
firm me in this fentiment: in the parifh of Weft Whitton, near 
Middleham, there is a large proportion of labouring peafantry, 
out of the number of about 500 inhabitants, who anfwer in all 
points the defeription above-mentioned; and in the parifh of 
Bolton adjoining, there is fcarcelv any day-labourer that does 
cot keep a cow. 

Is the reprefentation you have given of the condition of the pea¬ 
fantry in your neighbourhood to be underftood as applied to the 
general defeription of that clafs of people in this country ? 

I do not fuppofe it univerfally holds; but I do not think it 
lair, in forming a comparifon between the Negroes of the Weft 
India Iilands and the peafantry of Britain, to take a part of the 

4 U one 

t 34S ] 

one which is bed treated to compare with the whole of the lat¬ 
ter, among which, as there are many in comfortable circum- 
ftances, fo there are many a!fo, I am forry to fay, and free to ac¬ 
knowledge, extremely diftreflld for the fubfiftence of themfelves 
and families ;—but to fay precifely, what is general through all 
the parts of tfis kingdom, would lequire a greater knowledge of 
particulars than I have to form an average of the quantum of 
good they enjoy, and unlefs I could form fuch an average, I might 
be far from the juft ftatement of the cafe; but if I were to judge 
from my own obfervation, letting afide liberty on the one hand, 
and cruelty on the other, I fliould prefer the condition of a peafant 
in England, believing, as I do, his fituation, with equal labour, to 
be much preferable. 

Are or are not oatmeal, rye meal, bifeuit, flour, rice, peafe, In¬ 
dian corn, meal, yams, caffadd, eddoes, potatoes, fait fifli, her- 
rings, and occafionally Irifti beef and pork, or fome of thefe articles, 
the fort of provifions on which Negroes are generally fed in Bar- 
badoes ? or what other kind of food have they ? 

From all that I have heard and obferved when there, I do not 
conceive or believe all thofe articles above fpecified to enter into 
the regular diftribution of food to Negroes j the common food I 
recoiled to have been given, and the ftated allowance to Negroes 
under what is called good management, was nine pints of Guinea 
or Indian corn per week, and one pound and a half, and from thence 
to two pounds of fait fifh, or from four to fix herrings per week j 
this was the fpecies of provifion given in moft inftances that fell 
within my obfirvation throughout the year; there was a varia¬ 
tion fometirrus in their diet, by allowing what was thought ade¬ 
quate to the corn in yams or eddoes, or pigeon peafe, the growth 
of the ifland, but never in my recollection was a fubftitute offered 
of oatmeal, or meal of wheat or rye. I did not obferve a fuffkient 
growth of caffada for the purpofe, though it is not more nutritious 
or expenfive I believe than their common allowance. Flour and 
oatmeal I have known allowed in ficknefs, particularly fluxes; 
bifeuit was alfo given in cafe of ficknefs, very rarely in health^ 
though I have underftood that Dr. Mapp before mentioned made 
a conftant allowance of it to his Negroes, in addition to their 
ftated allowance when at hard labour. In fome eftates, the weekly 
allowance has been equal to twelve pints of corn per week, and I 
believe fix herrings; how much ltfs may have been allowed in 
oth,er eftates I cannot fay, but I have heard as a matter well- 
known, that the allowance ftated above was only given to the field 
Negroes; but to the women not working in the field, and to 


t 349 ] 

children, the alfowance was much fhort of* the above; and the 
Negroes part labour were alfo abridged of the above quantity. Some 
humane matters of my acquaintance have continued to Negroes 
part labour the allowance given in the time of their vigour ; and 
this was noted as being very humane. 

Are the above articles of food mentioned "by you nutritive and 
fubftantial ? 

They vary in the degree of nutrition afforded bv them. Guinea 
and Indian corn are of a much coarfer texture, and contain much 
more bran, and are lefs nutritious than meal of wheat cr barley. 
When the Indian corn happens to be heated in the hold of the 
fhip in which it is brought over from Virginia ufually, it alfo 
creates diforders. Eddoes are the moft nutritious and wholefome 
article of food produced in the Ifland; yams much lefs fo, be- * 

ing of a coarfer texture; potatoes are nutritious and wholefome; 
pigeon peafe are commonly reckoned wholefome and nutritious 
but have a very thick coat; faked herrings cannot always be 
well preferved through luch a voyage, and are therefore, toge¬ 
ther with fait fifh, often in a ftate not wholefome, but broken, 
and have a degree of putridity in that cafe; fait beef and pork 
I have rarely known given, except either upon the failure of 
other provifions, or as a great indulgence, in fmall quantities; it 
is fometimes given out in a bad, and fometimes in a good ftate, 
as it may happen to come to market; but I cannot fay that any 
eftate within my knowledge ever gave it as a part of the ftated 

Have you ever known, or do you believe it to be common, in 
Barbadoes, for the Negroes to carry to market and fell pigeon 
peafe, Guinea corn, eddoes, potatoes, or any other of the native 
provifions of the Ifland ? 

The Negroes frequent the market on Sundays in Bridge Towti 
with whatever they can fpare to fell of the above articles, and 
often commute them for other fpecies of provifions. The huck- 
fters about the town, and frequenting the plantations, often 
exchange fmall loaves of wheaten bread, of which the Negroes 
are fond, for corn, to the difadvantage of the Negro; as for in¬ 
sane?* one fmall halfpenny roll, the fize of which I need not 
defc.ibe, after alleging that the wheat has crofled the Atlantic, 
for one pint of Guinea corn j and fometimes they will fell their 
provitions to obtain rum and other matters, which they think 
neceflary to their convenience. This exchange alfo is often made 
when the Negro, being tired with his labour, has not time or 


[ 35° ] 

inclination to grind his corn upon the corn-done, Or to fetch water, 
or procure fuel to boil it for ufe. 

Does the wheat ufuqjly come in grain or in flour ? 

I never knew it come in grain j in barrels chiefly, and then, 
though it was good when (hipped, it often becomes fo heated in 
the voyage, as to be difagreeable to the White families who 
ufe it. 

Does not the wheaten flour imported into Barbadoe?' come as 
often from North America as from Europe and is not the North 
American flour generally looked upon to be of equal if not fuperior 
quality to that which does come from Europe ? 

I believe the Barbadoes market is chiefly fupplied from Ame¬ 
rica, and elpecially from Philadelphia j the flour is originally 
excellent, though heated at times in the hold of the (hip ; the 
comparative noui ifhment in a bufhel of Englifh and of American 
wheat, I have underftoed to be as 60 to 56, which eftimate I 
received from the late Governor Hutchinfon ; and I fliculd fup- 
pofe the fame proportion obtains in equal quantities of flour, as 
the above were the refpedive weights averaged of the corn of the 
two countries when meafured by the bufhel. 

Is the length of the paflage from Philadelphia to Barbadoes fo 
long as to be frequently a prejudice to the flour imported from 
thence to Barbadoes ? 

By no means; it is a paflage in general of three weeks ; the 
heat of the flour ari'es from accidental caufes, as the flour is always 
examined in Philadelphia before it is (hipped, and is not allowed 
to be exported unlefs it is good. 

In what particulars do you think that the climate of this coun¬ 
try is more favourable to the peafantry here than that of Barbadoes 
is to the Slaves there. 

One is a moderate, and the other a torrid climate, in which 
the rains in the fultry feafon of the year, if the Slaves are kept 
out in-it, checks the perfpiration at a feafon when it is greateft, 
whence I apprehend frequent dyfenteries arife j I think alio there 
mull be lefs fatigue in working in temperate weather, and even 
in cold, than in very hot, as one may experience in walking. In 
the parifh of Weft Whitton in Yorkfhire, which conlifts chiefly 
of perfons who are expofed to the weather in all feafons of the 
year, in rural employments, the vicar informed me three years 
ago, that out of nearly 500 inhabitants, he had no return to make 

1 of 

[ 35 1 1 

of deaths in 16 months; and I believe no example nearly alike 
to this can be produced in the healthieft fituation of the Iflands 
among the beft treated Negroes; which among other reafons 
determines my own judgment upon the matter. 

Do not the poor people of this country frequently fuffer as 
much in fickly feafons, and from the feverity of the winter, as 
the Slaves do from the nature of the climate of Barbadoes ? 

In fickly feafons, if by that term is meant feafons when any 
peculiar diforder is endemial, I never knew ficknefs to make much 
diftindtion between the rich and the poor; when the poor are fick, 
the laws of the country provide a fufficient relief for them, if 
thofe laws are put in execution; but the beft rule that I have 
of judging, is the number of inftances of mortality, which I find 
to be leL among the poor of this country than among the 
Negroes of the Weft Indies; and I do not allow or believe the 
Negroes to be in all cafes fuitably taken care of, though in many 
I believe they are; and I believe there is no law exifting in Bar¬ 
badoes to enforce the good treatment of the fick, though fuch a 
law for the care of the fick does exift in this country; were the 
gentlemen of the country and the magiftrates to put thefe laws 
into execution, and were not the poor left to the mercy of un¬ 
feeling farmers, their condition, with their own induftry, honefty 
and fobriety, would be far more comfortable than it is, or that 
of the Negroes can be without fuch legal provifion. 

From what calculation or accounts do you draw a comparative 
ftate between the mortality of the poor in this country, and of 
the Slaves in the Weft Indies ? 

My firft ground is, the increafed population of this kingdom 
without foreign acceflion of any amount; though according to 
Mr. Hume, London requires an annual recruit of 5000 to keep 
up its population, while it is well known that the Negro Slaves 
in all our Weft India Iflands fcarcely exceed half a million, if 
they are fo many, and yet it is contended that a recruit of about 
50,000 is yearly required to keep up the number of Slaves in the 
Weft India Iflands; I have alfo obferved fewer old people among 
the Negroes of the Weft Indies than among the Whites of this 
country; and I alio know that there was not one of the eftates 
with which I was acquainted in the Weft Indies, how fmall fo- 
ever, that did not lofe one or more Negroes annually, and yet I 
have known parilhes in England containing equal of greater num¬ 
bers, to be without a funeral in a year; in my own parifti, in 

4 X Leicefterfhire, 

C 352 ] 

Leicefterfhire, the proportion of deaths has been pretty nearly 
equal for a great number years pad, in the proportion of 
about 12 to 370; in the adjoining parifh to it, though fomething 
lets favourably fituated with regard to health, becaufe it lies 
lower, the redor informed me he had about the fame proportion 
of deaths to about twice my number of parifhioners ; and I im¬ 
pute the difference to arife from its being chiefly inhabited by 
peafantry employed in the fields, while I think the largeft pro- 
poition of my own are employed in in-door work} I conceive 
that proportion, though neither of thofe parifhes are in a healthy 
fituation, being fubjed: to agues and fevers, to be ftill lefs than 
the proportion of deaths in the Weft India Iflands, as far as I 
can judge from recolledtion, or from a comparifon of the imported 
Slaves to the number of the reft, which is about one to ten; 
(according to Mr. Long, the number imported in the Weft India 
Iflands is about 48,000; it is above two years fince I read his 
book; but I think he dates this to be about the average number 
imported into all the Weft India Iflands;) whereas, the proportion 
is nearly two thirds lefs in one of the abovementioned parifhes, 
and in the fame pioportion to twice the number in the other in- 
ftance; the proportion of deaths is ftill lefs in my parifh of Mid- 
dleham, of which much the greateft proportion is poor, and I be¬ 
lieve the average number to be between twenty-five and thirty of 
deaths to about 900 inhabitants; in one fmall parifh I have heard 
no inftance of death to occur for a twelvemonth together, viz. out 
of nearly twenty families for the fpace of one year no inftance of 
death has occurred; thefe are the principal grounds, and the 
inftance above of Weft Whitton, and the general healthinefs of 
the furrounding country, upon which I form my eftimate; I 
fprm this eftimate at the moment, without being previoufly 
prepared, and without any notes whatever, and therefore I 
prefume I may ftand fufficicntly guarded againft any inac¬ 

What is the proportion of deaths among the Whites in Barba- 
does, compared with the deaths of people in this country ? 

I am not able to fay. 

How long did you refide in North America ? 

I redded in the northern provinces of America from July 1770 
to June 1775, when I came to England during the blockade of 
Bofton; I returned to America in the Briftol man of war, failing 
from Portfmouth in December in the fame year, and arriving at 
the Carolinas in the May following; from whence I failed to 
3 Staten 

£ 353 1 

Staten Ifland, where the head quarters then were, in the July 
following, and was with the army at New York, Long Ifland, 
and Rhode Ifland; and continued at Rhode Ifland from De¬ 
cember to the next May (1777), when I returned to England. 

Where was your moft ufual place of refidence during the firft: 
five years of your being in the northern provinces of America ? 

In the vicinity of Bofton, and in Bofton. 

Was you, during the whole, or any part of that time, in the 
exercife of your ipintual function at Bofton ? 

Yes; a part. 

How long ? 

I do not recolledt certainly; the firft year, and more than the 
firft year, fome part of the fecond, I ferved in no church regu¬ 
larly, but gave my afliftance to my friends in different places: the 
enluing winter I ferved a church in Bofton, and had a ledturefhip 
the fpring following in the church of Salem, in which I conti¬ 
nued as long as - it was fafe to remain, till about December 1 jja ; 
after which, removing into Bofton without having the care of 
any church. General Gage introduced me to Lord Percy, whole 
regiment I ferved as chaplain, the proper chaplain not being with 
it, till June 1775, when I was recommended home by all the 
perfons of diftindtion there, to perfons of the firft confideration in 
this country, that I might be eftablifhed here. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Sabbati , 5 0 die Junii 1790 * 

TPHE Reverend 

and further examined. 

During your ftay in the Weft Indies, did it appear to you that 
the Negro mothers had the opportunity and advantages neceflary 
to enable them to give proper attention to the rearing of their 
children ? 

The conduct in this refpedl varied in various inftances. It 


[ 354 ] 

ftruck me from every thing I heard and obferved, as far as I can 
fpeak generally, that the Negro mothers commonly went into the 
field too early after their delivery, and being obliged to take with 
them their children while yet very tender, the milk of the mother 
became very feverifh with labour, and the heat of the fun too pow- 
eiful for the young child, which was alfo commonly expofed in a 
bafket, and in rainy weather could not be fheltered from the rain : 
I have underftood that this was fo generally thought the pradtice, 
as to induce fome humane gentlemen refident in England many 
years fince, to give directions to their overfeers to obferve a con¬ 
trary pradtice. 

Do you recollect whether Mr. M‘Mahon, of whom you have 
before fpoken, fuffered any other ill confequences from the feve- 
rity with which he treated his Negroes, befides the lofs confe- 
quent on that feverity ? • 

I never heard that he did. 

Do you recolledt how long Tom Perryman had been a Slave 
at the time when you ftated him to be worth near f. 100 
Sterling ? * 

He was born a Slave in confequence of the rule. Partus fequitur 
Ventrem;—his father was a White man, I believe of fome little 
property, and I fuppofe, at the time I knew him, he muft have 
been upwards of forty ; but I believe it was ten years afterwards, 
as I underftood from a mother and brother now dead, that he 
offered that price for his freedom.—He had been under a very in¬ 
dulgent mafter from his youth. I happened to know more of 
the eftate upon which he refided, from having been more con- 
verfant with that than with any other in my early youth. 

Do you recolledt whether the fum he offered for his freedom 
was fuppofed to be the whole of his property ? 

I confidered him, when I heard of this offer, to have made a 
tender of the largeft fum he could raife, as an inducement to his 
mafter to part with him. 

Are there, or are there not, to your knowledge, real disadvan¬ 
tages infeparable from a ftate of flivery, and entirely independent 
of the opinion of the individual, which abfoluiely prevent all fair 
comparifon between the Englifli peaiant and the Weft Indian 
Slave ? 

I think there are j in which opinion I am fupported by that of 
the beft and wifeft men in all ages.—I confider it, as Homer did 


[ 355 ] 

long fince, as degrading and debating the moral chamber of man. 
Mr. Locke fays, that the ft ate of flavery is fo debating and de¬ 
grading that he does not fee (his very words are, if I recoiled;) 
‘‘ how . man » much lefs a gentleman, can urge any plea 

And then the Witnefs was diredfed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put. That 
the latter part of the laftanfwer, given by the Witnefs, be 
expunged from the Minutes ; 

It pafied in the negative. 

Then the Witnefs was called in, and directed to proceed. 

I coniider the fpecial difadvantages of the Negro to be thefe fol- 
owing: ift. That he has not the comforts anting from the 
public teaching of religion, which affords the greateft confolation 
in diltrefs, and which 1 have known to fupport the labouring pea¬ 
rl 111 under his poverty, and to preferve him honeft. 2dly The 
Aegro has not thofe advantages derived fiom the poor laws in 
this country—from the many charitable eflablifhments of alms- 
houfes, holpnals, charitable bequefts—the diftnbution of com- 
nmnion money, and the private charity of individuals. I C on- 
hdtr, 3 dly That the Negro, in his left eftate, and under the beft 

treatment known, to be lefs well accommodated than the paupers 
in this country, when well attended to, viz. Sr. George’s Hano¬ 
ver- qu are ; the paupers of Shrewfbury, and the paupers of Wake- 
held in Yorkftltre. to inflanr^ nn u - 

an the paupers 

- r.. ,• r ei , • - AIU mccnveniencies 

in the fixation of a Slave, anie neccffanly out of flaverv 

[ 356 ] 

itfelf, and which therefore prevent a fair eomparifon being made 
between him and the free man ? 

Certainly; the being obliged to labour at the will of another, 
being unprotetted by laws, and enduring puniihment at the caprice 
of another, I confider to be fuch. 

_ Are you acquainted with any tranfatfion refpedling certain Free 
Negroes, which leads you to apprehend that Negroes, whether Free 
or blaves, are in a great meafuie incapable of availing themfelves 
effectually of that protection which, in many cafes, the laws ap- 
pear to afford them ? 

When 1 was 01 tiered to attend the Privy Council two vears 
ago, to be examined by their Lordfliips, I met Colonel Maxwell, 
late governor of the Bahama iGands (who is fince dead) in the 
itfeet, and he defired to know upon what bufinefs I was in town • 
I informed him; upon which he related to me the following 
tranfadtion, “ That while he was governor of the Bahamas, 
certain veffels conveying the Slaves liberated by our army in 
America, upon the evacuation of part of America, came into 
Providence, in the Bahamas; that the capta n who conveyed 
fome of them, fold them as his own ; that others were feized 
" upon their coming on fhore by the inhabitants, not having any 
right in their perlons from any claim of former property, and 
“ enflaved or attempted to beenflaVed; that fome of thefe run- 
ning away in order to efcape from fuch attempts, were adver- 
ci tized in the Bahama papery with a reward for fuch as were 
“ taken alive, and I apprehend a greater reward for the heads 
of fuch as could not be taken alive; that he brought home 
“ with him a news-paper containing fuch advertifements, which 
“ he lodged m the hands of a gentleman then in a high depart- 
“ ment of the law.” I defired Governor Maxwell to appear 
before the Privy Council with this evidence; he feemed not very 
defnous of coming forward in fuch a matter, but faid, He would 
“ if abfolutely required.” The governor informed me he had 
made fome attempts to redrefs their grievance, but was defired by 
fuch inhabitants to mind his own bufinefs, and leave them to their« 
Other Negroes under fimilar circnmftances, liberated by the army 
were Pent to Nova Scotia, in which province thev formed a little 
fettlement as freemen. 

y? ui ; ^ refidence at the Ifland of Barbadoes, where was the 
moll ufual place of your refidence ? 

_ In P arifll of Saint Jofeph, with feveral fliort abfences, fome- 
t/mes tor a day or two, and tometimes for a week or two. 



[ 357 ] 

Was it upon a fugar plantation that you fo refided, in Saint To- 
feph’s parifli ? 

It was. 

What was the name of the proprietor of that plantation ? 

Mr. Holder. 

Had you any benefice in the ifland of Barbadoes when you 
was laft there? 

No benefice or ecclefiaftical emolument whatever, though I was 
often employed in the fervice of the church, in different parts of 
the ifland, for my friends. 

Upon your quitting Barbadoes, where did you remove to, and 
fettle ? 

Landing at Rhode Ifland, I vifited different parts of America 
for feme months, then remained the winter in the vicinity of 
Bofton, and having no ecclefiaftical cure, was in different parts 
of the country; till undertaking a church in Bofton, firft for one 
winter, and then being fixed at Salem for about two years, I re¬ 
turned to Bofton, as before mentioned. 

How long have you been in the enjoyment of your refpedtive 
livings in Yorkshire and Leicefterfhire ? 

I hat in Leicefterfhire I pofteffed from Lady-day 1770 ; that in 
Yorkshire from Auguft 1786. ' 

Did Governor Maxwell tell you the nature of the attempts 
made ufe of by him to redrefs the grievances of the Negroes that 
were fold upon their coming to Providence, as you have de- 
feribed ? • 

He fpecified no particular means, but that of applying to fuch 
perfons. I did not apprehend that the whole number of the Negroes 
fo landed were fold, but a part only ; the reft, the inhabitants, I 
apprehend, endeavoured to feize upon without purchafe. The 
converfation paffed in the ftreet, and was not fo long dwelt upon 
in that particular. My chief point with him was to obtain his 
information before the Privy Council. 

Was he, at the time of this converfation, actually governor of 
the Bahama Iflands ? 

He was not. 

Do you know, or have you underftood from him, or any other 


pcrfon, whether at the time of his (Governor Maxwell’s) being 
governor of the Bahama Iflands, there was or was not a civil 
eflablifhment of juflice in that country, to which Governor Max¬ 
well, if he had thought fit, might have reforted for redrefiing the 
injuries of thefe Negroes? 

I have not; nor converfed with him upon that point. 

Did he give you any particular reafon for his not chufing to 
appear before the Committee of Privy Council, and to communi¬ 
cate this tranfadion to their Lordihips, without being ablolutely 
required io to do ? 

I do not recoiled that he did; but feemed to exprefs a degree 
of unwillingnels, though not an ablolute refulal to come for¬ 

Did you communicate this tranfadion to any of the Lords of 
the Privy Council, or to any fubordinate officers attending them, 
when you were before their Lordfliips, or at any other time ? 

I did not fee any of their Lordthips at any other time during 
my flay in town, than while 1 was before them in council, nor 
any of their fubordinate officers, except in a morning or two 
after, when I was allowed to look over the evidence I had given, 
in order to corred it; and then Mr. Fawkener having occafion 
to go out, I remained only while it was ncceflary to overlook my 
evidence. I do not know at what precil'e period of my (lay in 
town this converfation pafled, whether before or after my evi¬ 
dence, but I mentioned it in general converfation; and my bu- 
finefs in town being finidied, I left London, and did not return 
to it till this time. 

Queftion repeated. 

I did not. 

You have faid, “ That it is contended that a recruit of about 
“ 50,000 Negroes is yearly required to keep up the number of 
“ Slaves in the Well India Iflands;” by whom is it fo con¬ 
tended ? 

I underftood it to be contended by the defenders of the African 
Slave Trade, that recruits from Africa are neceflary to keep up 
the flock’of Negroes in all the iflands; and I flated that number 
according to the fentiment prevailing in my mind at the time; 
how near the aflu il importation I cannot fay, but if I have the 
leave of the Committee, I will briefly (late, from a print in my 
pocket, the grounds of my judgment. 


[ 359 ] 

What are your reafons for faying, “ That it is contended by 
“ the defenders of the African Slave Trade}” is it from any 
account furnifhed by any delegates from the African merchants 
of this country, or by any other pcrfons to the Privy Council, or 
from any evidence given to the Houfe of Commons upon that 
fubjedf ? 

It is not. 

Did you ever read the account furniftied to the Privy Council, 
by the delegates from Liverpool, of the whole number of S'aves 
annually exported from Africa by the fubjedts of Great Britain ? 

I have not. 

Was you ever informed of the grofs number of Slaves ftated in 
that report to be annually exported from Africa by the fubjedts of 
Great Britain ? 

I have not been fo informed. 

. . - * 

Do you mean to fay, that from the beft of your recolledtion 
Mr. Long ftates the average number of 48,000 Slaves to be an¬ 
nually imported into the Britifh Weft; India Blands for the ufe of 
thofe Iflands, and that no part of that average number is exported 
to foreign dominions f 

I did conceive, from what I recolledted, it might be the 
average number, but I find from a fingle note made by myfelf, 
that Mr. Long ftates the number of African Slaves imported into 
all the Britifh Iflands for the year 1771, to be forty-feven thou- 
fand one hundred and odd; and for two fucceflive years, he ftates 
the imports into Jamaica only at 10,000 the one year, or nearly, and 
16,000, or nearly, the enfuing year; that he ftates in other years 
the numbers imported into that ifland to be 6,000; in another year 
to be 9 000} and alfo, that in one year fpecified by him, confide- 
r»ble numbers were imported from the French Iflands into Jamaica, 
the African trade being at the fame time very briflc; in another 
part of his book he fpecifies the value of all the Slaves impoted 
into all the Britifh Ifl inds to be of the value of one million and an 
half; but this he ftates from another writer, as far as I can recoi¬ 

Qneftion repeated. 

I underftood that they were for the ufe of the Britifh Iflands in 
general; but fome might be re-exported, whch 1 did not conceive 
to be of any confiderable amount; I was confirmed in this opinion 
by what I had feen extradted from the Abbe Raynal in other publi¬ 
cations on that fubjedt. 

4 % 


[ 3 ] 

What might be the number which you underllood by Mr. Long’s 
account to be exported from that annual importation into the Britifh 
Iflands, to foreign dominions ? 

I do not recolledt any definite number) more or lefs. 

You have Hated, in confirmation of your opinion given in your 
anfwer to a former queftion, that Mr. Locke fays, “ That the date 
“ of Slavery is fo debafing and degrading, that he does not lee 
“ how any man, much lefs a gentleman, can urge any plea for it;*’ 
have you ever read a code of laws printed in Mr. Locke’s works, 
and faid therein to have been compoled by him for the province of 
South Carolina ? 

I have not. 

Did you ever hear that there is amongft thofe laws, one to the 
following fubftance; viz. “ That every freeman of Carolina fhall 
“ have an abfolute dominion over his Negro Slave, of whatever re- 
“ ligious opinion or perfuafion he may be ?” 

I have not. 

Have you ever read Mr. Locke’s chapter on Slavery? 

Not fince my leaving Oxford. 

Do you recolledt that part of it wherein he exprefsly fays, 
“ That the Slave, being incapable of property himfelf, is not to 
** be confidered as a fubjedt of civil fociety?” or words to that 
effedt ? 

I do not but it is of a piece with the Roman civil law in that 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

And a motion being made, and the queftion being put. That 
the whole of the Queftions and Anfwers which relate to 
the quotation from Mr. Locke, be expunged from the 

It palled in the negative. 


That this Examination of Mr. How, Mr. Jefferys, the Re¬ 
verend Mr. Rees, Mr. Woolrich, Mr. Dalrymple, and the 
Reverend Mr. Nicholls, be reported to the Houle. 


; , -i - - f 

ll 4 '* '» - m ■ • 

... —^ 9 

* »• i K J t 4 

... '< l: ‘ * *. i, \ i 01 * 

V * .HI '* ' » ' 








Reported 7th June 1790. 

Witncfies Examined, 



[ 3C< 3 



Mer curtly 9 0 die yunii 1790. 

THE SELECT COMMITTEE appointed to take 
the Examination of Witnefles on the Slave Trade. 

Luna , 7 0 die Junii 1790. 

M R HENRY ELLISON, gunner of the Refiftance 
man of war, called in, and examined. , 

Were you ever in Africa l 


When, to what parts, and how often ? 

My firft voyage, I think, was about the year 1759, to the 
river Gambia, and I continued in the African trade till about the 
beginning of the year 1770 ; I was prefled in the year 1771 ; I 
have been three voyages to Gambia—one to Benin—one to Old 
Calabar—two to New Calabar—one to Senegal—and one to the 
Ifle de Los. 

During your being on any part of the coaft, did any thing ever 
fall within your notice which induced you to believe that Slaves 
were obtained by treachery or force ? 

I faw a native Black called Captain Lemma Lemma, he was on 
board our fhip to receive his cuftoms, and feeing a canoe pad- 

5 A dling 

N° 5. 

[ 3 62 ] 

dling in fhore with three people in it (an old man, a young man, 
and a woman) he ordered one of his canoes, which was alonghde 
of our fhip, to go and take the canoe, which they did, and 
brought her alonglide with the people in her ; they were brought 
on board to be fold. Mr. Wilfon, the chief mate, purchafed the 
young man and woman ; the other was too old, and he refufed to 
buy him: Lemma Lemma then ordered him (the old man) into 
the canoe, and his head was laid upon one of the thwarts of the 
boat, and chopped off, and immediately thrown overboard. 

Who was this Lemma Lemma ? 

He was a man who had a great many war canoes, fome of 
them had fix or eight fwivels in them ; he brought down about 
ten with him when he came to receive his cuftoms, and he 
feemed to be feared by the reft of the natives ; I did not fee a canoe 
out on the river while he was there, except the one which he 
took ; and if they had known he had been out they would not 
have come. 

Had you ever any converfation with the two perfons who 
were purchafed out of the canoe in the manner before de- 
fcribed ? 

By way of figns, in the beh manner they could tell us, I under- 
ftood that the old man was their father; I did not underhand the 

Did you make out from them whether they had been convicted 
of any crime, or under what pretence they had been fold ? 

No , I did not j 1 do not know that I afked them. 

How did you underhand them to have been brought into the 
condition of flavery ? 

They were brought in by force. 

Did you conceive Lemma Lemma had any right to fell 
them ? 

No, I could not conceive what right he had; by all appearance 
he forced them againh their inclination. 

Were they his fubjedls ? 

No, they were not; they belonged a great dihance from his 

How long did Lemma Lemma hay in the neighbourhood of 
your fhip ? 

About ten days 1 think. 


[ 363 ] 

During that time was he frequently on board ? 

Every day. 

On what occafions ; did he ever eat or drink on board ? 

Yes, every day; the occafion of his coming on board was to 
get his cuftoms, I think, and to eat and drink. 

Have you often obferved the Slaves brought on board with 
marks of wounds on them ? 

No, I never remember any. 

Have any other circumftances fallen under your notice, on any 
other part of the coaft, to induce you believe Slaves are obtained 
by fraud or force ? 

No, 1 do not remember any; that is the only one that ever 
came under my notice to fee it done. 

On board the feveral fhips in which you have failed, have you 
often known boys and girls without their parents, or other near 
relations ? 

Yes, a great many, in every fhip that I have been in. 

Did you underftand at all any one of the African languages ? 

Yes, I could fpeak the Mandingo, which is fpoken up the river 
Gambia. I was there very young. 

Did you ever endeavour to make out from the Slaves, either by 
figns, or by converfing with fuch as fpoke the Mandingo language, 
how they had been brought into Slavery ? 

Yes ; they all tell us in the beft manner they can, that they 
have been ftolen. 

Were Slaves ever brought on board your Ihip in the night, on 
any part of the coaft? 

Yes j frequently in Gambia River. 

Defcribe the occafion of their being fo brought ? 

We could not particularly tell the reafon ; but I Ihould fuppofe 
they were afraid of being l'een in the day-time. 

Did you ever yourfelf aflift in bringing off Slaves in the 
night ? 

Yes, I have j I have been fetching canoe-boys on board at 




C 364 ] 

Explain to the Committee what you know o f the occafion> 
and manner of thefe canoe-boys being brought on board ? 

It is moft commonly when their mailers want goods, or for 
fome trifling offences. As to the manner of bringing them on 
board, we bring them in our own boats. 

Whence did you bring them ? 

trom their mailers houfes, when they were alleep. We went 
to fetch them in the night-time, left they Ihould make their 

Were the canoe-boys aware that they were to be fold ? 

No, I Ihould fuppofe not; if they had, they would have made 
their elcape. 

Did you ever knew any other ways wherein thefe canoe-boys 
were fold, without being previoufly aware of it ? 

\ es, I have. I have known the mailer call them out of the - 
canoe to bring fomething up for him, and when they have gone 
on board they have been immediately feized and put in irons. 

Are thefe canoe-boys in general well or ill treated by their 
mailers ? 

I never faw any of them ill treated ; I have feen them eating 
and drinking in the fame houfe with their mailers, and fomc'- 
times with them. 

Did any thing fall under your notice, that induced you to be¬ 
lieve that Slaves are fometimes carried off fraudulently or forcibly 
by the European traders ? 

Yes; there were two taken from the ifland of Furnandipo while 
I was there, by the Dobfon’s boat, of Liverpool, and carried to 
Old Calabar, where the fhip lay. We went to the ifland for 
yams a few days after, and fired feveral mufquets as fignais 
for the inhabitants to bring yams, and feeing a few of them 
peeping through the bulhes very flily, we could not think 
the reafon of it; they would not attempt to come to the boat 
as ufual, fo that I jumped overboard, and fwam afliore* and 
a few' of them came round me; and an old man made figns to us, 
that a fhip s boat had ilcle a man and a woman. I was loon 
after lurrounded by a great number of them, and they prefented 
their darts towardo me, fignifying that they would kill me if we 
did not bring the man and woman back again. The people in 
the boat feeing them, fired fome mulkets over their heads with ball, 
upon which they all ran into the woods direUly. They left a 
S goat 

[ 3$5 ] 

goat upon the beach and Tome yams, which we got into the boat, 
and flaid till night, to fee if any of them would come down 
again ; but we faw none of them. Then we went to Calabar, 
and acquainted the Captain we could get no yams upon account 
of theie two people having been carried off Captain Briggs then 
went to the Captain of the Dobfon, and acquainted him there 
would be no more trade there without he would deliver them 
up ; which he did, and we carried them back in our fhallop. 
Directly the natives faw them, they brought down yams, goats, 
fowls, honey, and palm wine, and loaded the boat as full as fhe 
could flow, and would not take the leafl article for it. As foon 
as the boat was loaded, and had got a cafk of water, which the 
natives filled and rolled to us, we delivered the man and wo¬ 
man to them, whom they took in their arms, and never fat 
them down on the ground till they were out of our fight, and 
we faw no more of them. 

How long was this before the departure of the Dobfon from 
the coaft ? 

She did not flay very long after. I cannot juflly fay how 
long ; but I believe eight, ten, or twelve days. 

Had fhe obtained her fupply from the Ifland of Furnandipo 
before this tranfa&ion ? 

Yes, fhe had ; that was the lafl trip the boat was to make, fhe 
was then fully flaved. 

Did you ever know any inflances of meafures being taken to 
force the natives to trade when they were unwilling fo to do ? 

Yes ; I was lying at Yanamaroo, in Gambia river, when a 
parcel of Slaves was brought down, and the traders had railed 
the price ; the captains would not give it, upon which the trade 
was flopped ; the captains thought to compel them by firing upon 
their town, and we fired red-hot fhot from our fhip, and feveral 
of their houfes were let on fire ; all the fhips (making about 
feven or eight fail, I think) fired upon the town at the fame 

Did you ever take on board any of the children or relations of 
the Black Traders, as pawns or pledges for goods advanced to 
them by the fhips ? 

Yes; very often. 

Did you ever know any of thefe pawns carried off? 

We carried two pawns off in the Briton, Captain Wilfon. 

5 & 


[ 3^6 ] 

Did they appear extremely dejected on account of being thus 
carried off? 

Yes, they did. 

In general, do the Slaves when brought on board appear much 
dejetted ; or do they fubmit to their fate with tolerable chearful- 
nefs ? 

I never faw any but what were dejected very much. 

Are the women you have feen on the Coaft of Africa modeft 
and decent ? 

Yes, they are ; I never faw any otherwife. 

Did you ever fee people working in the fields in Africa ? 

Yes, I have. 

Were they men, or women ? 


What in general in your fhips has been the fituation of the 
Slaves, as to comfort, when in their apartments below ? 

They complain a great deal of the heat; I have feen them faint¬ 
ing away through heat; there was always a very difagreeable fmell 
from their tubs. 

Have they appeared to you crowded, or to have convenient 
room ? 

They were very much crowded, and clofe flowed ; we had two 
tier of people, one upon the deck, and one upon the platform. 

Mention any particular fhip and voyage in which they appeared 
to you fo crowded ? 

They were the mofl crowded in the Nightingale, of Briflol. 

What to the beft of your recollettion was the tonnage of the 
Nightingale, and what number of Slaves had you on board ? 

I think {he might be about 170 ton, or hardly fo much ; Ihe 
was a very fmall fnow, and I think we purchafed about 270 
Slaves; we had 30 of the boys who meffed in the long boat all the 
Middle Paffage, and flept there too, for we had not room below 
for them. 

You have mentioned the Briton, was that fhip alfo crowded ? 

She was when we firfl left the coaft. 


[ 3^7 1 

To the beft of your recolledion, what was her tonnage, and 
what the number of Slaves on board ? 

I believe the Briton might be about 230 or 240 tons, and we 
purchafed 375 Slaves. 

What number of Slaves might you lofe in thofe two voyages, to 
the beft of your recollettion ? 

I think we buried but fix or feven in the Nightingale, for all (he 
was fo full, for we were remarkably healthy; we buried near 200 
in the Briton (I cannot juftly fay the number), for we had the fmall- 
pox ; the laft man Slave we purchafed, brought on board to re¬ 
lieve a pawn, had the fmall-pox ; the doctor told Mr. Wllfon that 
it furely was the fmall-pox ; he faid he did not believe it, and 
if it was, he would keep him, as he was a fine man j it foon broke 
out upon almoft all the Slaves in the fhip, and the platforms I 
have feen juft like one continued fcab with the matter; we have 
hauled up 8 or 10 of them dead of a morning; the fiefh and {kin 
has peeled off their wrifts when we have taken hold of them, being 
entirely mortified. 

Had you ever in any other of your {hips any extraordinary mor¬ 
tality ? 

In my fecond voyage in the Nightingale we buried about 150. 

Of what diforder did they chiefly die ? 

Of the flux and fevers. 

And then the Witnefs was directed to withdraw. 

Mart is, 8° die Maii 1790. 

Mr. HENRY ELLISON called in j and further ex¬ 

Out of what number did you lofe 150 Slaves in your fecond 
voyage ? 

We had about 250 when we failed from the coaft ; I cannot juft¬ 
ly fay to a few Slaves, but that was about the number. 


f 368 ] 

Were the men Slaves generally fettered on board the feveral 
veflels in which you failed ? 

In all the Guineamen that I have been in they have been in 
InacKies, two and two together. 

deS CfCrlbe thC mannCr ° f their bdng Chained When brou S ht °n 

There is a ring upon the (hackle on their legs, through which 

\ . ai , n and locked abaft the barricade ; they are 

chained on both Tides the deck. 3 

In this fituation do they take excrcife ? 

They are made to dance every day. 


By what means are they fo made to dance ? 

Sometimes, they are willing to dance, and fometimes they are 
compelled to it by flogging with a cat. 

Have you ever known inftances wherein for any time together 
the claves have not been brought on deck ? 

Very often in the Middle Paflage when it rains. 

Have they fuffered in thefe cafes from being confined below ? 

♦1, n aVC fre< J u . entl y ^ een tkem Minting away through heat, and 
the fleam coming through the gratings like a furnace from their 
breath ; we have been obliged to get many of them up for fear 
they would die in the rooms. 

Had you wind fails in any of the velTels in which you failed ? 

Not in any that I recoiled—if they were in the (hip, I never 
faw them made ufe of. 

What in general was the treatment of the Slaves on board the 
mips in which you failed ? 

I never faw them treated ill in any (hip but the Briton and 
(Nightingale; I have known Mr. Wilfon order eight or ten of 
them up at a time for making a little noife in the rooms at night 
tie them up to the booms, flog them very feverely with a wire 
cat, and afterwards clap the thumb-ferews upon them, and leave 
them in that fituation till morning—I have feen the ends of their 
thumbs mortify from having heen thumb-ferewed fo violently 
which has thrown them into fevers, and they have died. The* 
women were making a little noife over the Captain’s head when 
he was at dinner; he came out with a wire cat, and began to flog 
away amongft them ; fix of them jumped overboard, and five of 

8 them 

L 3% ] 

them were drowned ; one we got in again, and he ordered her to be 
ducked at the crotchet-yard-arm; he let her up and down, I dare 
fay, a dozen times as an example for the reft: he faid he did it 
that they fhould not jump overboard ; fhe died, I think, the next 
day. The Nightingale was lying in New Calabar River, and the 
Slaves rofe on board of the Africa ; when they were quelled, 
there were about eight or ten of them fele&ed out of the reft, 
as ringleaders to be punifhed ; they were tied up to a rough tree, 
(that is a fpare top-maft,) and we took fpell and fpell at flogging 
of them, both the African’s people and our boat’s crew, till we 
were all tired of flogging them ; but this flogging had no effedt 
upon them; they were fo ftubborn, they never cried out. Captain 
Carter came on board, and ordered iome cooks tormentors and 
tongs to be put in the fire, and made red hot, with which he burnt 
their bare backfides in a moll dreadful manner. 

Do you mean that he did this with his own hands ? 

Yes, he did, I faw him. 

Do the Slaves ever fhew any difinclination to eat ? 

I have often feen them refufe their victuals; whenever they do, 
they are flogged till they do eat. 

Are the women Slaves fometimes whipped, or ftruck, on board 
fhip, as well as the men ? 

Yes, they are; but not fo very often as the men are. 

Have you known inftances wherein this treatment has been 
highly relented by the women ? 

I knew one inftance of it, and that was in the Nightingale, on 
the Middle Paflage.—A woman, whom we called the boatfwain 
of the reft, ufed to keep them quiet when in the rooms, and 
when they were on deck Iikewife. She one day difobliged the 
fecond mate ; he gave her a cut or two with a little cat he had 
in his hand. She flew at him with great rage, but he puftied her 
away from her, and ftruck her three or four times with the cat 
very fmartly. When fhe found fhe could not have her revenge 
of him, fhe fprung two or three feet on the deck, and dropped 
down dead. She was thrown overboard in about half an hour after 
and tore to pieces by the fharks. * 

By whom are the Slaves when on board generally fuperin- 
tended ? 

The chief mate and boatfwain have charge of the men; and the 
fecond mate and gunner, if there is one in the fhip, have charge 
of the women. 

5 C 


[ 37° ] 

Have they generally fome inflrument of correction in their 
hands ? 

They always have a cat, every one of them, when amongft the 
Slaves, either upon deck or below. , 

Do the Slaves often fing when on board of fhip ? 

At the time of their dancing they always fing to fome tune or 
other in their own way; I have very often heard them fing 
mournful tunes when in their rooms in the night-time. 

You have mentioned one inftance of Slaves attempting to rife, 
can you mention any other ? 

They made an attempt in the Upton, but it did not come to 
any head; there were a few women that got out of irons, but we 
found it out time enough to prevent it; a canoe boy who could 
fpeak Englifli told us that the Slaves meant to rife that night, or 
the next morning, when they came upon deck. 

What in general was the fituation of the feamen on board the 
fhips in which you failed, both with refpeCt to their food, lodging, 
and general treatment ? 

• As to the allowance it was fmall in all fhips that I have been in, 
efpecially in the Middle PafTage; we were always at an allowance 
of provifions, both outward bound and homeward bound ; the 
feamen that I faw the word ufed, were in the Briton and Nightin¬ 
gale ; I never was in a fhip where the feamen had any place to 
put their heads in under deck, but were obliged to lay upon deck 
in all weathers. 

How were you generally off for water ? 

Very fhort in the Middle PafTage. We were obliged to fetch 
a gun barrel from the topmaft head when we wanted to drink, and 
carry it up again, without fuffering any body elfe to drink at the 
fame time: I have many times been drier before I came down 
again than I w r as before I went up; for I durft not bring the gun 
barrel down with me again to drink a fecond time till fomebody 
elfe had been for it after me. 

You have faid in general that the feamen were ill treated, can 
you fpecify any particular inftances ? 

We had a boy jumped overboard in the Briton, on the 
outward bound palfage.—Wilfon, the chief mate, was always 
beating of him. One morning the boy had not got the tea¬ 
kettle boiling time enough for liis breakfaft; when he did 
Bring it, he told him he would feverely flog him after break- 

. C 37 1 1 

fad, for fear of which he went into the lee fore chains; and 
when Wilfon came out of the cabin, he called for Paddy (which 
was the name the boy went by, being an Irilh boy) ; he would 
not come to him, but remained where he was in the chains; 
upon which Mr. Wilfon went forward, and put his hand 
through the flirouds to take hold of the boy and haul him in; 
upon which the boy jumped over board, and was drowned. 
Another time, on the Middle Paflage, Wilfon ordered one James 
Allifon, a man that he had been continually beating of for very 
trifling matters, to go into the woman’s room to fcrape. He told 
him he was not able, for he was very unwell; but he ob¬ 
liged him to go down into the room, and after he got down he 
did not begin to fcrape. Wilfon afked him the reafon why he 
did not go to work, and get the room fcraped ? he told him he 
was not able; upon which he took a handfpike and threw at 
him, which ftruck him in the breaft, and he dropped down in 
the room to all appearance dead; but he recovered at that time. 
Some time after we got him up, and he died the next day. In 
the Nightingale, on the Middle Paflage, the gunner was on the 
barricado with a mufket as a centry while the Slaves were go¬ 
ing down ; he happened to look aft; the Captain afked him why 
he did not look forward at the Slaves, he faid, “ That he could 
“ willingly turn the mulket, and blow his brains outbut did 
not think the captain heard him, as he fpoke to himfelf. When 
the Slaves were down, the captain ordered him to be feized up 
and flogged in a very fevere manner, and he died in two or three 
days afterwards. 

Did any inftances of the ill-treatment of feamen on board any 
other Ihip fall within your own pSrfonal knowledge ? 

They are moft commonly in all fhips beat and knocked about 
for nothing at all. 

Can you hate any particular inftance of ill-treatment? 

We had nothing elfe but ill-treatment in the Briton, from 
the firft of the voyage to the laft, and in the Nightingale like- 

Did you know any inftances of feamen making their efcape 
to the Continent, when lying off the Coaft of Africa? 

There were fix men ran away from the Phoenix of Briftol, the 
boatfwain and five more in the yawl, but were taken again by 
the Natives. When captain Bifliop heard it, he ordered them 
to be kept afhore at Forge, a fmall town at the mouth of New 
Calabar River, and to be chained by the necks, legs, and hands. 

[ 372 ] 

and ordered them only to be allowed a plantain a day each. The 
boatfwain, whofe name was Tom Jones, who was a fhip-mate of 
mine, and a very good feaman, died raving mad in his chains; 
the other five alfo died in their chains. I was on board Bifhop’s 
fhip one morning when he miffed a piece of ham ; he thought 
that two of thofe that went to cut wood had taken it; he ordered 
the yawl to he manned, and to fetch them on board again, and 
ordered the furgeon to give every one of them a puke, to fee if 
he could find which of them had eat the ham, but none of them 
threw any of it up. 

On board the fhips in which the feamen have been obliged to 
ufe the gun barrel, were fuch feamen as were fick forced to the 
fame expedient ? 

As long as ever they were able they were obliged to go for it. 
I remember one, who had very bad ulcerated legs, was going up 
for the gunbarrel; he got about half way up the main fhrouds, 
and was fo weak he was not able to get any further. I and another 
went up and aflifted him down again, and begged of the dodlor 
to give him a little decodion, which at firft he refufed to do, but 
afterwards gave him a fmall pannikin full; the man died in a day 
or two after. 

Have you ever been in the Weft Indies ? 

Yes I have ; in feveral of the iflands, particularly Barbadoes 
and Jamaica. 

In thofe Iflands have you ever feen feamen from on board 
Guinea fhips in a wretched and deftitute ftate ? 

Frequently at Barbadoes and Jamaica too ; I have feen them 
lying upon the wharfs with very large ulcers upon their legs 
and feet, and in a ftarving condition; and I have often carried 
them proviftons from the fhip which I belonged to; I have feen 
them almoft at the point of death lying under the cranes, and I 
have alfo feen the black people carrying them to Spring Path 
when dead, and burying them. 

Do you know whether any of the feamen you faw in the de¬ 
ftitute condition before mentioned had deferted from their fhips, 
or had received their wages and a regular difeharge ? 

I believe tney all get afhore to avoid the bad ufage, without 
their wages ; it is moft commonly the cafe with them ; many of 
them told me they got no pay from the fhip, but were glad to get 
afhore. ° 


[ 373 ] 

How did you know that the feamen of whom you have been 
juft fpeaking, actually belonged to Guineamen ? 

Some of them I knew perfonally from having failed with them, 
and others have told me fo ; I never faw any that belonged to 
any other (hips but Guineamen in that condition. 

Were you often on fhore in the Weft Indies ? 

Yes ; almoft every day for about eighteen months, at Kingfton 
in Jamaica ? 

Had you frequent opportunities of feeing the field as well as the 
domeftic Slaves ? 

I have feen more of them at Savannah le Mar, but I have feen 
them frequently at Kingfton ; I mean the country people. 

By country people do you mean plantation Slaves ? 

I do. 

What in general was the appearance of the plantation and of the 
town Slaves ? 

The town Slaves are always better drefled than what the others 
are, and look better. 

What in general was the appearance of th